Lake Austin real estate is amongst the most coveted in all of Austin. Not only do homeowners in this area enjoy the sights of living near beautiful Lake Austin, but in addition the region offers an array of entertainment opportunities to include fantastic restaurants with lake views and a number of recreational water activities varying from fishing to swimming.
Prospective homebuyers can find many different options … read more
Prospective homebuyers can find many different options in Lake Austin neighborhoods from which to choose, including one of a kind townhomes with breathtaking views, new construction & master-planned communities, and sizeable, custom built estates on multi-acre lots. Many luxury waterfront homes on Lake Austin have a private boathouse, allowing for just a short boat ride to a night out at any of the several waterfront restaurants available.
Just west of downtown Austin, Lake Austin’s lush, wooded shores wind through some of the city’s finest neighborhoods. Lake Austin is a long and narrow constant level lake that could be more aptly named a river. Lake Austin stretches twenty-two miles down river from Lake Travis, and the two lakes are separated from each other by the Mansfield Dam. The dam empties from the deepest depths of Lake Travis into Lake Austin, which in turn causes Lake Austin’s water temperature to remain consistently cool year round and particularly refreshing during the summer months. Due to its narrow shape, Lake Austin is a popular choice for water sports, and it is not uncommon to see wakeboarders making the most of the lake during every season.
Lake Austin History
Formerly Lake McDonald, Lake Austin is a man-made lake which lies to the west of Austin on the Colorado River. The first large reservoir in Texas, Lake McDonald was created by the construction Austin Dam, built from 1890 to 1893. Gradually, large amounts of sediment began to accumulate at the dam as there were no other major obstructions upstream at that time. Over time, the increasing pressure prompted the dam to slide, and during a heavy rain in 1900 it gave way, resulting in considerable flooding. In 1915 the dam was partially rebuilt, but a later dispute between the city and the contractor haulted all progress, and the unfinished dam was destroyed by high water later that year. Several years later, in 1938, the Lower Colorado River Authority received a contract to build a new dam, and in 1939 the 1,590 foot long Tom Miller Dam was completed.
Today, Lake Austin is just one of six different Lower Colorado River Authority, or LCRA, projects. It has a resovoir capacity of 21,000 acre-feet and a surface area of 1,830 acres, and due to coordination of electrical generation with the turbine discharge of upstream Mansfield Damn, Lake Austin maintains an uncontrolled spillway crest elevataion of 492.8 feet above sea level. There are two generators onsite at Tom Miller Dam, each with a capacity of 6,750 kilowatts.