Montopolis is a unique area with a rich history that dates back to the early 1800s. The area is considered one of Austin’s most diverse and this is reflected in the names of businesses and landmarks in the area. The San Jose Cemetary has an incredible Dia de los Muertos event every year. During July 4th and Thanksgiving celebrations, the night sky is filled with fireworks.
The neighborhood includes many community staples such as Florence’s comfort house and Ecology action which over the past ten years has reclaimed an impressive area of urban wilderness that is accessible to all residents.
The Montopolis neighborhood is experiencing a revitalization as working class residents are pushed out of the Travis Heights and South Austin markets. The resident mix has changed somewhat recently with home ownership declining from over 44% in 2010 to around 25% today as renters move into the area.
The area is also set to benefit from both public and private investments. Allison elementary has been granted substantial funding for school improvements. While the US 183 HWY project will soon provide easy access to the neighborhood. Multifamily home builders have seen the value in the area with major developments being recently completed at Aura and by Oden Hughes.
The City of Austin, in its effort to prioritize the area, will soon complete the new Montopolis Neighborhood Center providing fitness and community services. The center will be the largest in the city and while it’s opening may be delayed due to COVID-19 restrictions, it’s set to become an important cultural component of the neighborhood.
Montopolis is an attractive neighborhood for property developers for several reasons.
Location: Montopolis is located in Southeast Austin, which is a rapidly growing area of the city. It is near major transportation hubs such as the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, as well as major highways and main roads, making it easily accessible to other parts of the city.
Affordability: Montopolis is one of the more affordable neighborhoods in Austin, making it an attractive option for developers looking to build affordable housing options.
Development Potential: The neighborhood has a large amount of undeveloped land, which makes it an attractive location for developers looking to build new homes and businesses.
Demographics: Montopolis has a diverse population, with a mix of families, young professionals, and retirees. This diversity in the population can be appealing for developers who are looking to target different demographics with their projects.
Recreational opportunities: The neighborhood has a variety of recreational opportunities such as parks, trails, and riverside access.
IDEA Montopolis: This school is located in the Montopolis neighborhood and is part of the Austin Independent School District. It has a strong reputation for academic excellence and offers a variety of programs such as dual language, STEM, and fine arts programs.
Kealing Middle School: This school is located near the Montopolis neighborhood and is also part of the Austin Independent School District. It has a strong reputation for academic excellence and offers a variety of programs such as language immersion, fine arts, and athletics.
Eastside Memorial High School: This school is located near the Montopolis neighborhood and is part of the Austin Independent School District. It offers a wide range of academic programs and extracurricular activities, including college preparatory classes, language immersion, and athletics.
Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders: This school is located near the Montopolis neighborhood and is part of the Austin Independent School District. It is a public school for girls in grades 6-12, that focuses on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education, and leadership development
A little known fact about the area, the Montopolis neighborhood actually predates Austin itself. Situated near a tall bluff in southeast Austin at the intersection of US Highway 183 and state Highway 71, this “city on a hill” existed nine years before Austin did, established in 1830 by Jesse Tannehill, an early settler from Kentucky, who participated in the development of Travis County.
Montopolis was fully annexed by the city of Austin in the 1970s and has remained a working class area since that time. The Montopolis Bridge, a truss bridge that used to connect Montopolis to DT, was recently converted to pedestrian as part of the US 183 South Project.
Local resident, Fred Mcghee, has written a detailed history of the area which can be found here.
Montopolis is a neighborhood with a rich history dating back to the 1800s. The area was settled by Mexican and African American farmers who grew cotton, corn and other crops on the fertile land along the Colorado River. As the city of Austin began to expand, many of the original settlers were forced to sell their land to the city, which then sold the land to developers.
During the 1920s and 1930s, the neighborhood underwent significant changes with the construction of the Montopolis Bridge and the Austin Municipal Airport (now the site of the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport), which brought new residents and businesses to the area. The Montopolis Bridge, built in 1941, was an important infrastructure project that helped to connect the neighborhood to the rest of the city.
In the 1940s and 1950s, the neighborhood experienced a period of rapid growth as returning World War II veterans and their families moved into the area. This period of growth also brought an influx of people from different backgrounds and cultures, making Montopolis a diverse and vibrant community. Some of the most important figures in the community’s history include:
John Henry Montopolis: He was an early settler of the area and the neighborhood is named after him. He was a Mexican-American farmer and owned a large tract of land in the area.
James H. Robertson: He was an African American farmer and community leader who owned a large tract of land in the Montopolis area. He was an important figure in the early development of the neighborhood.
John Trevino: He was a Mexican American businessman and community leader who owned a large tract of land in the Montopolis area. He was also an important figure in the early development of the neighborhood.
Jesse D. Leal: He was a Mexican American businessman and community leader who owned a large tract of land in the Montopolis area. He was also an important figure in the early development of the neighborhood.
Arturo Alonzo Pena: He was a Mexican American businessman and community leader who owned a large tract of land in the Montopolis area. He was also an important figure in the early development of the neighborhood.