50+ Story Downtown Austin Tower Envisioned By Constructive Ventures

50+ Story Downtown Austin Tower Envisioned By Constructive Ventures

constructive-ventures-austin-energy

The Statesman is reporting some exciting news for the Austin Energy Control Center site.

Back in 2010, Constructive Ventures entered into a “Master Development Agreement” with the City of Austin for an agreed upon “transfer price” of $14,500,000.  Now that the economy is starting to show signs of strength, the developers think the next couple of years could be the right moment to deliver a 50+ story condo and office tower.

Constructive Ventures has a great track record of successful developments, including: Spring Condos, Barton Place, Pedernales Lofts, and Este.

The 1.7 acre site is located immediately north of the Seaholm condos, which is under construction, and west of 360 condos.  The site is one of the last missing pieces for developing the southwest district of downtown Austin.

While still a vision, if built, this would be an impressive addition to the downtown Austin skyline.  More important is this development would further improve the street-level experience for pedestrians.

Summary of what we know:

- 400 residences (condos for sale)
- 50+ stories
- 120,000 square feet of office space
- 15,000 square feet of retail and restaurants

The design has shifted from a two-tower plan to a single tower, and the architect of record is Brett Rhode, who also designed 7rio, Aspen Heights, and The Catherine (née Aquaterra).

Construction could begin as early as Q4 of 2015. Expect capital market conditions to dictate exactly when it could happen. Whenever it begins, expect 2.5 years to complete construction.

Just for fun, in the image you see above, we’ve overlaid a building massing onto the site in order to show [very crudely!] how a 50+ story tower fits into the skyline.  From the Statesman article, [architect] “Brett Rhode said the tower will be a mostly glass, with landscaped areas on different levels that will break down the scale of the building and enhance its visual appeal.”

-Jude

constructive-ventures-austin-energy





DANA to Host Transportation Forum Monday, July 28

DANA to Host Transportation Forum Monday, July 28

urban-rail

The Downtown Austin Neighborhood Association will be hosting a Transportation Forum THIS upcoming Monday, July 28, at Malverde – a lush, swanky private event space downtown located right above La Condesa.

The focus of the forum will be the proposed Urban Rail alignment from Project Connect, which DANA has publicly supported.  The current rail alignment would cut right through downtown through Trinity Street.  The current plan would also cause the less than 2-year old Waller Creek Boathouse (which is the location of one of my favorite little coffee shops, Alta’s) to be demolished to make way for the bridge over lady bird lake – which has caused a good amount of grumbling.

The program for the presentation will be as follows:

6:00pm – Doors Open
6:15-6:30pm – Presentation by Project Connect
6:30-6:35pm – Response
6:35-6:50pm – Presentation by AURA
6:50-6:55pm – Response
7:00-7:30pm – Q&A

So, as you can see, this will be more of a dialogue or debate rather than just a stiff ol’ presentation. AURA believes that the proposed urban rail route is actually worse than doing nothing.  I’m expecting things to get a little heated, for sure – which means this should be pretty darn interesting. Is it bad that I’m excited?

release-the-hounds

“Release the hounds!”

The event is free, but priority entry will be given to DANA Members, and RSVP is required.  Seating is limited.  Malverde will be offering 1/2 priced drinks and DANA is footing the bill for some light appetizers.

You can RSVP to the event directly from DAB:





Why It’s Bull****: The Waller Creek Tunnel Inlet Is Too Tall

Why It’s Bull****: The Waller Creek Tunnel Inlet Is Too Tall

waller-creek-tunnel-height

Had the weekend to catch up on some old news, and this issue of the Waller Creek Tunnel inlet being too tall smelled foolish from the first I heard about it.

Kudos to the Statesman’s Sarah Coppola for the revealing a potential $45mm fix to reduce the height of the Waller Creek Tunnel Inlet would be wasted money since the Texas State Library and Archives Commission is already blocking the view.

Say what?! That’s right. “Fixing” the inlet structure to be fully compliant with the CVC will not regain any view! An existing government building is blocking the view already.

The Waller Creek Tunnel Inlet is under construction in Waterloo Park. This is the business end of the tunnel construction which was on target for completion in mid-2015.

It was almost two years when the tunnel’s under ground dig was passing beneath the Sabine.

I remain optimistic that elected officials at the local and state level will apply reason, rather than force the taxpayers to pay to bring the inlet into CVC “compliance.”





Where to Watch the World Cup – Downtown Austin Sports Bars

Where to Watch the World Cup – Downtown Austin Sports Bars

Liberty-Tavern-Bar

I’m not real into soccer.  Matter of fact, first soccer game I ever watched was Sunday’s World Cup Match between the USA and Portugal.  What an exciting game, though!  I literally stood up and cheered when the US made that second goal, and then I moaned and beseeched the soccer gods when Portugal scored to tie.

It was enough to get me excited about the upcoming match against zee Germans, happening this Thursday at 11am (tomorrow!).  But, where to watch this epic game in downtown Austin?  I have a couple of  suggestions.

1. Liberty Tavern, in the Hilton Downtown: 500 E 4th

Liberty-Tavern-Bar

photo by Diana Nogueira

Remodeled in 2012, with 11 big screens, and an airy and spacious atmosphere. Great local beers, and ample breakfast / lunch food. Extremely convenient for those living in the 5 Fifty-Five Condos or Sabine Condos in downtown Austin.

liberty-tavern-interior

For the World Cup, they’ve also added a 16′x9′ Jumbo HD screen!

liberty-tavern-big-screen

photo by Diana Nogueira

And drink specials galore, including $2 Lonestars!

liberty-tavern-world-cup-specials

2. Takoba (downtown adjacent), 1411 E. 7th

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  • 112″ indoor projector screen
  • 75″ TV outside
  • covered outdoor seating / misters
  • $15 buckets a beer

Need I say more?

3. The Mohawk, 912 Red River

The Mohawk has multiple screens, including an indoor screen with surround sound, along with beers and bubbles, and noshes by Frank.  Nice dark and cool atmosphere for the big screen area, too!

Don’t like any of my suggestions?  Check out a more comprehensive list from Austin Culture Map, which includes my top three, plus other downtown venues like Russian House, Holy Mountain, Fado, and Bar 96, plus places in other parts of the city.





Dog Houses: Downtown Austin’s Top 3 Condos For Dog Lovers

Dog Houses: Downtown Austin’s Top 3 Condos For Dog Lovers

The Villas' "backyard"

blog-looking-cuteEvery morning, when I am walking my little canine creature, Blog (pictured left) – I see many of my neighbors walking their dogs, too.  It’s part of the culture of Austin, a place where we celebrate dog friendly restaurants, and where dog owners create public outcry when the city makes changes to off-leash park space.

So, it should come as no surprise that most downtown Austin’s highrises are pet-friendly.  However, there are a couple of towers that go a little above and beyond when it comes to our four-legged friends.  Here are some of my favorite downtown condos for the dog lover.

The Austonian

We know, we know, the Austonian is pretty much great at everything.  This fabulous, well-located, luxury condo complex boasts several high-end amenities.  But, for the dog loving resident, the amenities for man’s best friend are pretty great.  They not only have an 600 sf outdoor dog park on their 10th floor, but an adjacent indoor dog grooming room – right on site!  Check out the pics below.


The 360 Condos

Dog run at The 360

Dog run created from under-utilized space at the 360 condos

A signature building of downtown Austin’s renaissance, the 360 Condos is in the heart of downtown. While easily accessible to Shoal Creek, with 430 units served by 4 elevator bays, the wait for an elevator may at times make a harried pet owner a bit nervous.

The 360 condos HOA got creative and transformed some underutilized garage space on the 4th floor into a very nice dog run, open 24/7! Very helpful for a pet owner in a hurry or a pet with a late night emergency!

Bonus points to the 360 for having a Royal Blue Grocery on its ground level – makes buying healthy dog treats very convenient!


Tie: Milago Condos / Villas On Town Lake

The Rainey Street district condos have what few other downtown Austin condos have, which is direct access to a plethora of green space, and even better, the hike & bike trail.  And, with the new boardwalk opening, you can get more excited to head east for that lap around the lake with your beloved Fido.

Additionally, according to their newsletter, Milago also just recently added a special pet corridor on the northwest side of their building.

To a dog, there’s just no substitute for a walk outside, but be careful on the hot concrete in the summer.

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The benefits of dedicated dog “runs” like the 360 condos and Austonian have is not only a positive for your pets, but also these amenities provide residents with a safe onsite place for owners to walk their dogs during the night hours.  They are also convenient alternatives to the dwindling places dog owners have around their neighborhood to take their dogs out when nature calls, and they also lessen the impact on our communal park spaces.

Is your building especially dog friendly? Let us know what makes it so!

-Amber

p.s. if you’re planning on getting a dog or pet you should absolutely first look to Austin Pets Alive.
p.p.s. And now, just because we can – some gifs of some happy dogs.

 





Downtown Austin Delivery Services

Downtown Austin Delivery Services

instacart-recipes-feature

Seems like every other week I’m hearing about some slickly marketed new service that will deliver something to my house.  Dollar Shave Club, BarkBox, BirchBox, the list goes on and on and on.

Delivery is the new rage and I have to say that I love it. Like, I love it like Ron Swanson loves breakfast food and brunettes.

I’m particularly seduced by services that deliver food to my door. There are three services in particular that I’ve been using (or am about to start using), and all of them make me pretty happy:

[Read more...]





Forgotten About Downtown Austin Retail Space Available

Forgotten About Downtown Austin Retail Space Available

601e5thretailaustin

Many of you have passed by the Convention Center parking garage, and could be forgiven for not noticing the vacant retail space that wraps the ground level of the garage.  For the better part of 10 years the City and Harry Whittington were entrenched in lawsuits.

The space is finally available and the City is looking to get it leased up quickly.  The location at 601 e 5th Street is one block from the Metro station, Convention Center, Moonshine, and 6th Street.

I think if the City gets a synergistic mix of tenants this could be the beginning of a downtown retail hub, anchored by Waller Creek and the Metro station.  The location is excellent and is only made better with obvious access to parking above.

convention-center-garage-retail

Within a half-mile you’ll find 7,365 hotel rooms, ~6mm feet of office, 69 retail stores, 84 restaurants.  The City had an appraisal completed pegging the anticipated rent rate of $15.00-$18.00 NNN per year, which seems pretty conservative, even for the shell condition of the space.

There are three retail spaces available along Red River, ranging from 3,580 ft for the smallest space to the total contiguous 14,890 ft.

If you’ve got a good idea, the City is accepting lease proposals.

-Jude

p.s.  If you want to check out the building, the Austin Convention & Visitors Bureau (ACVB) recently relocated its visitors center to one of the prominent spaces along 4th Street (much better digs than their old 6th Street spot, IMO, and includes curated murals from local artists).

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2014 Downtown Living Tour – Showcasing Downtown Austin Condos

2014 Downtown Living Tour – Showcasing Downtown Austin Condos

downtownlivingtour

The Downtown Austin Neighborhood Association (DANA) is holding their 10th Annual Downtown Living Tour, featuring some great downtown Austin condos for sale on Sunday, June 1, from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

BUYTICKETS

Walk to a nearby food truck for lunch or pop into a few boutiques between seeing the city’s best examples of urban living spaces. Complimentary, air-conditioned shuttles will take attendees from one stop to the next, while booze and bites will be provided at tour stops along the way.

Some interesting tour stops this year include The Shore Condos, 360 CondosThe Sabine, Villas on Town Lake, and Capital Studios.  There are a couple of the new apartment complexes on the Tour this year, as well as a boutique retail store and a coffee shop.

General Admission tickets are $18.50. Tickets may be purchased at http://atxdlt.com. Tickets will also be available the day of the tour at CRAVE for $25. A portion of the Downtown Living Tour proceeds benefit Pease Elementary and The Shoal Creek Conservancy.

Will Call, registration, and shuttle headquarters will be located at CRAVE Austin, where attendees can also enjoy free bubbles and bites before hopping on a shuttle.

If you are one of the first 150 people to buy tickets – you get the chance to win a pair of diamond earrings from Krugers!  I’ve been told there are only a limited amount of these tickets left (and you have to choose GA with Goodie Bag ticket type) – so buy soon if you want to win some diamonds!

krugers

Downtown Living Tour | Presented by DANA
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Based on information from the Austin Board of REALTORS ® (alternatively, from ACTRIS) for the period through 8/20/14 1:25 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.

Information being provided is for consumers’ personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing.

This IDX solution is (c) Diverse Solutions 2014.