Austin, Texas is a growing city full of fun nightlife spots, must-see museums, and lots of live music venues. It is also home to the University of Texas Longhorns and their mascot Bevo. Downtown Austin is where everyone wants to be, but is it safe?

The crime rate has increased with population growth in and around downtown Austin. Most areas are safe during the day, but places such as 6th Street and near I-35 get dangerous after dark. Despite this fact, downtown Austin is safe compared to bigger cities. 

Below, we’ll discuss more information on downtown Austin’s safety. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know!

Is Downtown Austin Safe?

Downtown Austin is generally safe, with lots of hot spots to enjoy. 

However, there are unsafe places as well, especially after dark. 

Most of the more dangerous areas in Austin are considered unsafe due to an increase in both nightlife and homeless camps. 

One of the roughest areas in downtown Austin is 6th Street, dubbed “Dirty 6th” by residents. This area has a lot of nightclubs and bars, most of which lie between I-35 and South Congress along 6th Street. 

However, there is also a significant homeless population in this area. 

According to some reports around the city, several violent crimes have happened in the ARCH area, or Austin Resource Centre for the Homeless

The campus of the University of Texas was once considered extremely dangerous at night. 

Now, there’s an increased police presence around the campus, which has helped reduce the crime rate. 

The same is true for the Capitol area

What Do Austin Residents Say About Downtown?

In a recent survey by the Austin City Government, residents of Austin stated they were concerned about safety. 

Over half of the individuals interviewed stated that they felt unsafe walking alone downtown at night.

Approximately 10% of respondents said they’d feel unsafe walking alone downtown during the day.

With these statistics in mind, we can say downtown Austin is relatively safe during the day, and although fun at night, precautions should be taken to ensure your safety. 

What Are Austin’s Crime Rate Statistics?

According to NeighborhoodScout, the chances of a person becoming a victim of a violent crime in Austin is 1 in 205. 

Violent crimes include:

  • Armed robbery
  • Aggravated assault
  • Rape
  • Murder

However, most of the crime that takes place in Austin is actually property crime, such as vandalism and theft.

How Does Austin’s Crime Rate Compare to Other Cities?

Although the crime rate in Austin has increased over the last several years, it is lower than in other major cities.

The table below will highlight crime statistics in Austin between 2020 and 2022 and compare them to other major cities across the United States.

CityNumber of Violent CrimesNumber of Non-Violent Crimes Total
New York9,82933,88943,718

As you can see, Austin has more crime than somewhere like Atlanta, but much less than somewhere like Chicago.

Tips for Staying Safe in Austin, Texas at Night 

While Austin is the safest during the daytime, nighttime could be a different story. 

Follow the tips below to help reduce your chances of falling victim to a crime while in downtown Austin

  • Leave your car at home. This can help reduce the chances of getting carjacked or having your car stolen. It also means you won’t have to search for your car in a dark lot. 
  • Watch for aggressive behavior. Stay alert to your surroundings and get into a populated, well-lit area as quickly as possible if you notice anything amiss. 
  • Avoid certain areas. Areas like 6th Street, the intersection of Neches, and 7th Street are known for higher crime rates. 
  • Leave your sparkly jewelry at home. Having visible, expensive-looking jewelry on can increase your chances of being mugged. 
  • Leave the area before midnight. You may have heard the saying, “nothing good ever happens after midnight.” This can be true, especially in dangerous areas. 
  • Avoid dimly-lit areas and less populated areas. If you must go to a place like this, make sure you walk as a group and get to your destination quickly. 
  • Never leave home without your phone fully charged. And, make sure you have good cell service in case of emergencies.

These tips will keep you safe not only in Austin, but also in any other city you visit. Keeping these things in mind can help you enjoy your night and make great memories in Austin, Texas. 

In Conclusion

Austin, Texas is an exciting place to visit. With its music scene, museums, and nightlife, there is something for just about everyone.

Despite its obvious appeal, it can be a dangerous place, especially if precautions are not taken. 

Areas around 6th Street are considered some of the most unsafe areas in the city due to expansive nightlife and homeless populations. 

Always stay alert, stay in well-lit areas, walk in a group, and leave enticing items at home.