Waller Park Place – Signs Of Progress

Waller Park Place – Signs Of Progress

Renderings_Waller_Feb_2014_1

I was walking along Red River this weekend and noticed clear signals that Sutton Company is pushing forward earnestly with the private largest development ever (!) proposed in downtown Austin – Waller Park Place.

Most of the aging structures from Cesar Chavez to Davis Street have been vacated… and can now be razed.

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There had been productive month-to-month leases in place. Probably not a huge amount of money coming from those leases, but money none-the-less.  So this seems like a good indicator that demolition will coming in the next couple of months, and in fact, we’ve confirmed demo permits have been issued.

Birds Eye View

Birds Eye View

Most of these lots had been owned for decades by another local developer, Perry Lorenz, who began acquiring them back in the ’80s.  At the time, the only “density” in the Rainey Street neighborhood was Villas on Town Lake and Towers of Town Lake.

When Sutton closed the site earlier this year, by fate of timing, they also assumed the role of being one of the first developers that will participate in bringing the Waller Creek District Master Plan to life (the other being the Fairmont Hotel).  Not a small task, but this isn’t a small development either.  My conversations with Sutton about Waller Creek bode well, as the importance of getting it right is understood by all.

Bonus: raise your hand if you remember when this site was slated to be 21c Residences (ahh, memories).  Double bonus: remember when this site was intended for Vignette?

-Jude

RBJ Center: 18 Acres of East Austin To Be Redeveloped

RBJ Center: 18 Acres of East Austin To Be Redeveloped

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Drive northbound on I-35 into downtown, look to the right while crossing Ladybird Lake, and you cannot miss the lone tower on the east side of Austin.

This is the Rebekah Baines Johnson Center (aka. Austin Geriatric Center). This is also one of the most desirable parcels of land in Austin.

RBJ Center was built in 1972 to provide affordable housing for seniors and people with disabilities. Currently, the 112 efficiency units (~400sf) and 138 one bedrooms (~600sf) at the RBJ Center will rent for $430 to $514, and $460 to $545, respectively. There is a 6 month wait list for efficiencies, and a year long wait list for one-bedrooms.

A team of three local developers has been selected by the private non-profit Austin Geriatric Center to redevelop 18 acres of the property. Two notable members of the team are Momark Development, developers of Edgewick, the Austonian, and also Chestnut Commons; and Southwest Strategies Group, who is responsible for Seaholm.

The team’s proposal includes:

• 250 new units of affordable senior housing
• 250 units of renovated senior housing
• Approximately 340 units of mixed-income apartments and condos
• 25,000 square feet of commercial space

RBJ

The involvement of Momark Development bodes well for the redevelopment as Terry Mitchell is one of the more progressive developers in town with a track record of successful projects.

This property has always been mysterious from afar (have you seen the abandoned cul-de-sac along Haskell?) Walk or drive past the property border along Comal and the grassy field looks like an overgrown no-mans land juxtaposed with a tower that is a little worse for wear. It has always raised an eyebrow.

The evolution of this site is long overdue, so it’s exciting to see some action.

Millennium Rainey Releases New Renderings

Millennium Rainey Releases New Renderings

DinnersteinMilleniumRaineyAustin2

The rendering below shows how the upcoming downtown Austin apartment building, Millennium Rainey, will greet the intersection of Driskill & Rainey Street.

Project Summary:
- 8 Stories
- 326 apartments for rent
- 543,715 ft
- 2.21 acres
- Anticipated LEED H Silver Certification
- Developer: Dinerstein

From the architect Ziegler Cooper:

Amenities include an infinity edge pool on the 7th floor, a clubroom, demonstration kitchen, and fitness room overlooking the pool deck. A conference room off on the ground floor will also be available for resident’s use. A ground floor retail component is included, providing close shopping and eatery options for residents. With close access to Colorado River, various parks and bike trails, downtown Austin and public transportation this up and coming neighborhood will appeal to young professionals and students seeking an urban living with access to a 24/7 lifestyle in downtown Austin.

Millennium Rainey is expected to deliver in Q4 of 2015.  You can follow Millennium Rainey’s progress on Twitter, though they spell it with one “n”… go figure(?)

DinnersteinMilleniumRaineyAustin

Renderings by Ziegler Cooper

DinnersteinMilleniumRaineyAustin2

Renderings by Ziegler Cooper

Aspen Heights Announces 22-Story Apartment Highrise in Downtown Austin

Aspen Heights Announces 22-Story Apartment Highrise in Downtown Austin

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Back in December, Austin Towers broke the news of a proposed apartment tower at 8th and Nueces Streets, to be called Aspen Heights.

This week the Austin Business Journal confirmed that the project is expected to break ground this summer.  Here’s what we know…

Project name = Aspen Heights
Number of stories = 22
Number of apartment = 196
Height = 200 feet (tiered from 60′ to 120′ to 200′)
Building Type = Apartments for rent
Location = 8th Street @ Nueces Street
Architect = Rhode Partners
Developer = Aspen Heights
Project Start Date = Summer 2014
Project Completion = 2015

The 22-story project is the company’s first foray into conventional multifamily housing, though CEO and Founder Greg Henry has a history of working on various real estate developments dating back to his career in Arkansas. [Source: ABJ]

8thandNueces

The Fairmont Austin: Fall 2017

The Fairmont Austin: Fall 2017

austin-fairmont-hotel-rendering

New signage was installed today at Red River and Cesar Chavez for the Fairmont Austin.

This is the proof-of-life many of us have been waiting for after delayed commencement of construction, which had been announced over a year ago.

fairmont-austin-hotel

New Office Space Coming To 916 Congress Avenue

New Office Space Coming To 916 Congress Avenue

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A site plan application has been filed for 916 Congress Ave. The CBD site used to house popular cafe Little City Coffee before it was sold to the Texas Public Policy Foundation.

Back in July, Sixthriver Architects presented a new design to the City of Austin Historic Landmark Commission.

The HLC has issued their stamp of approval, so this is likely to be approved by council.

Drawing by Sixthriver Architects presented to Historic Landmark Commission

Drawing by Sixthriver Architects presented to Historic Landmark Commission

The proposed design calls for an additional three stories of office space set back from the historic Congress Ave facade.

It won’t be a large building, parking will be off-site, and the total size of the proposed design is 15,966ft. It looks like it would be attractive upgrade to the block, while delivering 2074ft of retail space at the street level.

The west side of the 900 block has evolved nicely in recent years; conversely, the east side of the 900 block has struggled with three buildings remaining vacant and boarded up.

photo of 916 Congress Ave with addition shown in background, drawing by Sixthriver Architects

photo of 916 Congress Ave with addition shown in background, drawing by Sixthriver Architects

Another Downtown Hotel Project Announced In Rainey District

Another Downtown Hotel Project Announced In Rainey District

crude-massing-proposed-hotel-78-east-ave

An application to build a hotel at 78 and 80 East Avenue (the “Brinks” site) has been filed with the City.

The site, just east of Rainey Street, consist of four parcels, with a footprint of about .52 acres. The plans call for 14 stories including first floor lobby and two above ground parking decks.  The sites are zoned CBD, so it’s unlikely any variances will be needed.

The project is named Homewood Suites at East Avenue. A Google search for “Homewood Suites” doesn’t reveal anything inspired, so our expectations are set accordingly.

We asked for renderings but none were available to be released. Above we’ve mocked up a [very] crude massing of how a 14 story building could fit onto the site.

78 and 80 East Ave

78 and 80 East Ave

Proposed at 8th & Nueces: Aspen Heights Apartments

Proposed at 8th & Nueces: Aspen Heights Apartments

Drawings by Rhode Partners, as submitted to Design Commission

Late last month, developers submitted a site plan approval application with the City for a high-rise at 8th & Nueces.  According to backup materials submitted to the Design Commission, this is what we know:

Project name = Aspen Heights
Number of stories = 22
Height = 200 feet (tiered from 60′ to 120′ to 200′)
Architect = Rhode Partners
Project Start Date = Spring 2014
Project Completion = 2015

Drawings by Rhode Partners, as submitted to Design Commission

Drawings by Rhode Partners, as submitted to Design Commission

Stair-stepping from 60′ to 120′ to 200′, the setbacks are designed to minimize building height adjacent to the low-rise residential character to the west.

No restaurant or retail is indicated, but they do contemplate placing live/work units along Nueces and San Antonio Streets to create variety and activity at the street level.

This location should inject some much needed residential density north of 6th Street and east of Shoal Creek.  The documents submitted to the Design Commission indicate this will be apartments, but the site plan application indicates this will be a condo.  Conflicting info there, so we’ll see how it shakes out.

Drawings by Rhode Partners, as submitted to Design Commission

Drawings by Rhode Partners, as submitted to Design Commission

Drawings by Rhode Partners, as submitted to Design Commission

Drawings by Rhode Partners, as submitted to Design Commission

Based on information from the Austin Board of REALTORS ® (alternatively, from ACTRIS) for the period through 7/25/14 3:27 AM PDT. Neither the Board nor ACTRIS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy. All data is provided “AS IS” and with all faults. Data maintained by the Board or ACTRIS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.

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