Thursday, March 13, 2008

Visiting Austin - Texas State Capital

Austin's Capitol building Last week we visited Austin, the capital city of Texas. This was one of the quickest visits for me. We left Dallas on Wednesday afternoon and returned on Thursday night, covering over 450 miles. Padma was invited to deliver a talk at a entrepreneurship seminar and so there we were in Austin. The talk was in one of the several small conference rooms inside the Capitol building, which is also the seat of the Texas State government. It could be compared to any state legislature building in India such as the Vidhana Soudha in Bangalore.

I took this opportunity to capture some great images of the Capitol building and the statues in its gardens. Here they are for your information. The Capitol building is a majestic structure built of stone and concrete and has numerous halls, conference rooms, a cafetaria, souvenir shop etc. Anyone can enter the premises, there is no red-tape or unnecessary security hidrances. In fact the building administration conducts FREE guided tours of the building so visitors may get familiarised about the same.

This I feel is a great way to encourage tourism and generate revenue. After walking around the building, visitors are bound to buy some souvenir or trinket at the shop. Some of them may visit the cafetaria (which is not subsidised), bottomline is that the state government generates some revenue. Another way the state generates revenue from this huge building is by renting out its conference halls to private events. So anyone can just rent a conference hall and conduct meetings and other official events. The address would sound prestigious and the venue swank too. I think it is time Indian state governments thought up this plan and started additional revenue generation.

The state's insignia is everywhere in the Capitol

These are two details of the shelter around one of the statues. I liked the design as well as the message and of course how Texans embed their state symbol "The Lone Star" in every aspect of their life

No comments: