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If You Build It, They Will Come

Photo by Kenn Zuniga
More than two dozen people await the opening of the pop-up Apple Store on Congress and 6th.

Consider it just another Southby line? Think again! People queued up for hours outside Apple’s "pop-up" store. The store opens today at 5 p.m. on the southwest corner of Congress Ave and 6th street. It'll only be open for two weeks and coincides with the release of Apple's iPad 2 and the beginning of the 2011 SXSW Conferences.

Austin resident John Muehlbauer postponed the start of his SXSW plans and was first in line at 6:30 this morning with his chair in hand hoping to be the first person to purchase the new iPad 2.

“What’s great about this [location] is that I’m already downtown,” Muehlbauer said. “So as soon as this is done, I can run to the Paramount or to a different venue to see ether a film or go right back to the conference right away. So hopefully by 5:05, I’m back in Southby mode.”

Andy Smith, Thomas Properties Managing Director of Leasing and the Chair of the Downtown Austin Alliance Congress Ave Committee, called this two-week location as a great opportunity to increase the excitement and energy along the avenue.  

“Yeah it’s for SXSW predominantly,” said Smith. “But we’re confident that the message it’s going to send with Apple and other users, potential retail users of the avenue is, ‘You know what, downtown Austin and Congress Avenue in particular has an exciting vibrant workforce, folks are living down here, there’s convention center business, this is where we want to be.'”

Austin has two permanent Apple Stores. One is in Barton Creek Mall and the other is at the Domain in North Austin.