Eleanor McKinney  
phone: (512) 445-5202
Landscape Architect fax: (512) 445-3432
 

I guess I am now officially a Village Elder… with all the pluses and minuses of that term.

I came to Austin in 1972 – yes, I am one of those people who want to claim that early glorious time when Austin was a small town and when tolerance of all types of people was the mode of the day.

Austin raised me – nurtured me, molded me, pushed me, forgave me.
I will be forever grateful for this.

My words back to you. Each one of us makes Austin what it is. It is our privilege to be able to give back to such a wonderful city that the world is just starting to discover. This is it, this is our time – we are the privileged ones to be here at the fulcrum point of turning a small town in Texas into a prominent urban city of the World.

Great urban design will continue to affect our day to day enjoyment of the city. Design can tie us together as a community or the lack of it can split us apart into our individual households.

Great Public Spaces are the living rooms of our community life: Support them, advocate for them, fund them, participate in their design, and enjoy them with your friends and family.

I am leaving the Design Commission, but I am not leaving my passion for Great Public Spaces and citizen involvement in their design process. My goal is to add public involvement services to my landscape architectural practice to further engage the public in participatory design.

I hope to see all of you in the future as we shape this great city of ours into a place where we can continue to see the positive results of our joint civic pride and community creativity – or weirdness as it is.

Thank you Mayor Leffingwell and members of the City Council for this Distinguished Service Award. It is an honor and a privilege to have served the city for over 15 years.

Austin, you rock!