Threadgill’s to remain on Riverside Drive — for now

Nov 09, 2017

Threadgill’s has a new lease on life — at least for the near term.

Proprietor Eddie Wilson has signed a lease with his landlord, members of the Moton Crockett Jr. family, that will keep Wilson’s homestyle cooking restaurant and live music venue at West Riverside Drive and Barton Springs Road for another three years, according to Jack Burton, executive vice president of Crockett Properties Inc.

Wilson recently told employees he planned to close Threadgill’s World Headquarters next year due to rising property taxes, rent and insurance that he said has soared more than 500 percent in the past five years at the valuable downtown-area site at 301 W. Riverside Drive.

Burton confirmed an item in the Austin Chronicle that reported the lease deal Thursday but did not disclose terms of the lease.

“We value Threadgill’s as a long-time tenant and wish them continued success at our property,” Burton said in an email to the American-Statesman.

Wilson, who owned the legendary Armadillo World Headquarters concert hall in the 1970s, told the Chronicle: “Basically I got a piece of paper that will keep me busy concentrating on food and butts-in-seats for a while…It’s a big relief, but it’s not a career win or anything. I still have the challenge of getting by in a boom town.”

Wilson told the Statesman last month that he had no plans to close his smaller-scale location, the original Threadgill’s on North Lamar Boulevard.

There was one aspect of the Chronicle piece Burton refuted, however — a mention of a rendering Wilson possesses depicting a skyscraper with Threadgill’s World Headquarters on the bottom floor.

“We have no plans for a high-rise, mid-rise, or low-rise of any type for our property,” Burton said. “Occupying the ground floor of a skyscraper may be Eddie’s vision, but it’s not our vision. We’re quite happy with a ‘no-rise’ on our ground.”