Part of Shoal Creek Greenbelt renamed in honor of former city council member

A segment of the Shoal Creek Greenbelt Trail between West Avenue and 5th Street is now known as Chris Riley Bend following a unanimous vote from the Austin City Council.

At Thursday’s council meeting, one item stood out among the almost 200 item-long agenda. That item was labeled as number 106.

"This is a special item, and we all feel the joy of it," said Austin Mayor Kirk Watson.

It is not every day the mayor and council vote to dedicate a portion of a city landmark in someone’s honor, but that is exactly what was done at Thursday’s meeting. Council voted on the item renaming a segment of the Shoal Creek Greenbelt to "Chris Riley Bend".

"Special day because item 106 recognizes a lifetime of extraordinary service to Austin by renaming part of the Shoal Creek Trail as the Chris Riley Bend in honor of former council member Chris Riley," said council member Ryan Alter. 


Not only is Riley a former city council member, he is a born and raised Austinite. He graduated from Austin High School, then spent time at Harvard University before returning to study at UT Law.

"Many of the projects and issues he worked on. We continue to stand on his shoulders and build on his successes to this day," said Zo Qadri, council member.

Current council members had nothing but good things to say about the impact he has had on this city.

"Chris brought his vision of Austin as an active urban oasis to life, and we now share in that legacy along Shoal Creek Trail and throughout downtown," said Mayor Pro Tem Leslie Pool.

Riley himself said he was honored. He even took a moment to thank those around him who he says got him to this point.

"I can't thank you enough for everything you've done to make my life so special and to be here today to reflect back on, it means a lot to me. I just want to thank you all so much," said Riley.