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City gets grant to help crowdfund music venues

Neighborly Bonds Challenge awards $10,000 for project

The self-proclaimed Live Music Capital of the World (that’s Austin) will receive $10,000 in prize money to facilitate the purchase of some of its longtime venues, Community Impact newspaper reported Thursday.

Mayor Steve Adler’s office announced earlier in the day that city is one of five winners of the Neighborly Bonds Challenge. (According to its website, Neighborly is a registered financial broker-dealer in the business of making municipal bonds “accessible and transparent ... [by] providing better ways for people to invest directly in the places and civic projects they care about.

Adler said that the money will be used for legal, administrative, marketing, and other support services for creating a way for some Austin music venues to be purchased and preserved through a city trust, according to the community paper. The mayor added that the plan is to crowdsource $10 million for the fund, through which the city will invest in music venues to make them more affordable and sustainable to run.

The city’s economic development department has identified the Red River Cultural District, where Cheer-up Charlie’s, Mohawk, and Stubb’s are located, as an area for preservation, the CI report added.

The announcement took place at Austin City Hall, across the street from the former site of Liberty Lunch—a beloved and nationally known music venue that the City Council voted to close in order to redevelop the land in 1999, after a long night of impassioned citizen protest at its meeting.

Mayor announces plan to protect Austin music venues through $10M fund [Community Impact]