Sparky Pocket Park is the site of the former North Austin Electric Substation at 3701 Grooms Street, which was rededicated as a public park in 2009. The North University Neighborhood Association has been working diligently to help transform the site into a neighborhood pocket park. The first phase of Sparky Pocket Park’s redevelopment included the installation of an award-winning public art piece, the Grotto Wall at Sparky Park, as well as landscape improvements to the site. The North Austin Electric Substation Building rehabilitation won a Preservation Austin Merit Award in 2016 and a Preservation Texas Honor Award in 2018.

The Parks and Recreation Department (PARD) rehabilitated the 1930s substation building to better relate to the pocket park. The project began with a schematic design phase in 2013, and construction was funded with a combination of Parkland Dedication funding and revenue funds from the onsite cell phone tower. The project, designed by hatch + ulland, owen architects, features an exterior steel and wood canopy, restored steel windows, and a large accordion door system to connect the interior and exterior.

Sparky Park rendering

For more information about reserving the North Austin Substation Building at Sparky Pocket Park, please contact PARD's Special Events Office