In the 1990s, Austin’s homeless ran up against another nationwide trend: downtown revitalization. After three decades of disinvestment, developers and investors wanted the central business districts back—and the unhoused were in the way. “It was intolerable,” says Jose E. Martinez, the original director of the downtown business lobby group, the Downtown Austin Alliance (DAA). “The homeless would go and spread-out cardboard and blankets and urinate and defecate on [businesses’] front doors. … The homeless would sleep on the benches, on the streets; throughout the day, they were out begging and demanding handouts.”