Accessibility

GENERAL INFORMATION FOR ATTENDEES WITH DISABILITIES

How to Contact SXSW EDU

Contact access@sxsw.com as soon as possible with any questions or specific accommodation requests. During the SXSW Conference, information is available at all Information Booths in the Austin Convention Center.

Accessibility Designated Badge & Companion Wristband

Attendees with disabilities who require the assistance of an attendant during SXSW can request an Accessibility Designated Badge by emailing access@sxsw.com or reg@sxsw.com after you purchase your credential online. The Accessibility Designated Badge allows for one Companion Wristband. When picking up Accessibility Designated Badges, go through the Help Desk at SXSW Registration to pick up the Companion Wristband. The following rules apply to the Companion Wristbands:

  • One Companion Wristband per Accessibility Designated Badgeholder.
  • The bearer of the Companion Wristband must be accompanied by the person with an Accessibility Designated Badge. The Companion Wristband does not grant access to any events by itself.
  • All registrants must pick up their own credentials by showing their state-issued photo ID at Registration in the Austin Convention Center.

SXSW Does NOT Provide

  • Devices that are personal or individually prescribed, such as wheelchairs, prescription eyeglasses, or hearing aids.
  • Services of a personal nature, such as assistance in eating, toileting or dressing, or the pushing of wheelchairs. Specific circumstances are detailed below.
  • Connections to sound boards.

Accommodations

Deadlines for making requests are:

  • SXSW EDU: Monday, February 4, 2019
  • Interactive and Film: Friday, February 8, 2019
  • Music: Monday, February 11, 2019

General Accommodations

SXSW allows service animals trained specifically to assist people with disabilities at all events. SXSW provides accessible facilities at all outdoor events where there are port-o-potties. Any additional accommodations may be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

PATRONS WHO ARE BLIND/VISION IMPAIRED
Patrons and presenters who are blind or have vision impairments should contact us at access@sxsw.com as soon as possible to discuss reasonable accommodations. During normal business hours, SXSW volunteers will be available at the Information Booths to read information to patrons requesting accommodation.

PATRONS WHO ARE DEAF AND HARD OF HEARING
Patrons and presenters who are deaf or hard of hearing should contact access@sxsw.com as soon as possible to discuss reasonable accommodations and to schedule interpreters for conference events that fall outside of Keynote Presentations, select Featured Speakers, and the Outdoor Stage at Lady Bird Lake, which are already scheduled to be interpreted into American Sign Language.

Interpreters:

  • Presenters. Deaf presenters will be provided interpreters for their own presentations, but accommodation(s) at other SXSW Conference panels and events must be requested.
  • SXSW Conference & SXSW EDU. SXSW does not provide interpreters to accompany individuals to trade shows, satellite events or parties. We will work to find an agency to provide pre-certified interpreters at no cost to SXSW Conference participants for such events. This free service is dependent on sufficient notice and is subject to availability. Requests for interpreting at these types of events should be emailed to access@sxsw.com.
  • SXSW Film Festival. Interpreting during screening of movies is provided only on a limited basis dependent on filmmaker, venue and sufficient request notice to access@sxsw.com. The Film Festival Pocket Guide designates which movies are closed-captioned or subtitled.
  • SXSW Music Festival. The musical performances at the SXSW Outdoor Stage at Lady Bird Lake will be accessible, featuring professional and certified ASL interpreters, but SXSW does NOT provide interpreting at music venues or showcases.

Seating Accommodations:

At all SXSW Conference events where there is seating, SXSW will establish accessible sections for the deaf or hard of hearing. Seats will be reserved for any accommodated patron and their Companion Wristband if applicable, but only until five minutes before the event starts, after which unclaimed seating will be opened to the general audience.

PATRONS WHO ARE MOBILITY IMPAIRED
Patrons and presenters with mobility impairments should contact access@sxsw.com as soon as possible to discuss and arrange accommodations. Please know that SXSW does not provide push services for presenters or patrons. Attendants are allowed with the Companion Wristband.

Wheelchairs and/or Scooters
Wheelchairs and 3- or 4-wheel electric scooters are allowed and are reasonably accommodated. Users of any other mobility devices should contact access@sxsw.com. Presenters with mobility impairments should contact access@sxsw.com as soon as possible to make appropriate accommodations.

Accessible Seating
At all events where there is seating provided, accessible sections will be established for mobility-impaired registrants and their Companion Wristband. Seating for panels, keynote presentations, awards ceremonies and other popular events fills up quickly. Space for a mobility device and one companion is on a first-come first-served basis and is not guaranteed. Seats will be reserved for any accommodated patron and their Companion Wristband if applicable, but only until five minutes before the event starts, after which unclaimed seating will be opened to the general audience.

SXSW Outdoor Stage
SXSW Outdoor Stage at Lady Bird Lake is a large outdoor venue with natural terrain. Attendance may require covering large distances over grassy, uneven and sometimes muddy ground. The accessible viewing platform is on the eastern side of the venue. The accessible viewing platform is available to patrons who use mobility devices plus one adult companion and/or minor children, as applicable. Information is available on directional signs or from any volunteer.

Transportation

SXSW takes place throughout downtown Austin. Traffic may be congested and parking can be scarce. Patrons should be prepared to travel long distances. Available transportation services include the following:

  • Accessible Vans. SXSW will provide an accessible van for attendees who use mobility devices. The van will only be available for pick-ups and drop-offs during scheduled shuttle hours and between established shuttle stops. Attendants wearing a Companion Wristband may accompany mobility-impaired registrants with the Accessibility Designated Badge in the van. To request accessible transportation please speak to shuttle drivers, shuttle staff (identified by shuttle staff t-shirts) located at most shuttle stops or text (NUMBER TBA). Information about shuttle stops is available at the Information Booths in the Austin Convention Center, or on the SXSW transportation services page.

  • Taxis. Accessible taxis servicing locations not covered by free SXSW shuttles include:

  • Public Transportation. Public transportation information is available at: http://www.capmetro.org/accessibility.

  • Parking Garages

As we confirm garages that accommodate wheelchair accessible vans, we will add that information here. Below is what we anticipate will be available.

  • E. 7th and San Jacinto Parking Garage: 5 ADA parking spots

  • Hilton Hotel Parking Garage: 500 E. 4th St., Austin, TX 78701. Entrance on Red River: 6 ADA parking spaces

  • Austin Convention Center Parking: 5th Street Garage

    • 601 East 5th Street, entrance on 5th Street, between Red River and Sabine streets: 7 ADA parking spaces on the ground floor
    • Upper levels: 10 ADA parking spaces with no more than 6’ 11” clearance
  • Hobby Building State Parking Garage

    • 300 San Antonio St., Austin, TX 78701. 5 ADA parking spaces
    • Entrance on Nueces and San Antonio
  • Silicon Labs

    • 400 W. Cesar Chavez St., entrance on San Antonio: 5 ADA parking spaces
    • 200 E. Cesar Chavez St., entrance on Colorado: 5 ADA parking spaces
    • Both parking garages are pay-to-park
    • Self parking starts at 3pm & valet parking starts at 5pm Austin Convention Center Parking: 2nd Street Garage
    • 201 East 2nd Street, entrance on Brazos: 19 handicap parking spaces. Due to the age of the building (built prior to ADA Federal requirements), clearance throughout the structure is 6’9”.
  • Radisson Hotel

    • 111 E Cesar Chavez St. Austin, TX 78701, 8 handicap parking spaces in the garage. Due to the age of the building (built prior to ADA Federal requirements) the clearance throughout the structure is 6’9”
  • Four Seasons Hotel

    • 98 San Jacinto Blvd., Austin, TX 78701. 4 ADA spaces
  • Sheraton Hotel

    • 701 E. 11th St., Austin, TX 78701. 7 ADA spaces
  • Omni Hotel

    • 700 San Jacinto, Austin, TX 78701. Entrance on E. 8th St 3 ADA spaces
  • Corazon Building

    • 1000 E. 5th St., Austin, TX 78702. Entrance on San Marcos. 7 ADA spaces
  • Palmer Event Center – 900 Barton Springs Rd.

    • 900 Barton Springs Road: ADA parking spaces are available on all levels, near the elevators

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