[Ed. – As every Los Angeleno knows, this means Austin’s “Stay Weird” days are numbered. No one enforces cult orthodoxy like Hollywood. BOHICA, Texas.]
“It’s absolutely insane,” marvels Jared Padalecki. “It’s like nothing I’ve ever seen. It’s growth and expansion on a turbocharger. You’re just going like … whoa.”
That the Walker actor might struggle a bit to express the seismic changes to Austin over the past year is perfectly understandable. The Texas capital has undergone a pandemic influx unlike anywhere else in the country thanks to a flood of invading tech companies (Samsung, Oracle) along with quarantine-exhausted, remote-working transplants from major cities seeking a lifestyle upgrade — including some notable actors who, like Padalecki (an Austin resident since 2010), suddenly decided that the Texas Hill Country was more alluring than the Hollywood Hills. …
[E]ven those accustomed to Austin’s growing pains have been stunned by the pandemic’s fallout, which rocketed housing prices by 43 percent in one year — the steepest climb of any major metro area in the country.