Starr Building Renderings

Two renderings of the Starr Building, re purposed to include a parking structure at 5th and Colorado.  A while back we showed you the history of this building before it was purchased by Kemp Properties.  Not much newsworthy here, but this is the first time I’ve seen the renderings.  At least the parking structure has retail underneath!

About Jude Galligan

Jude Galligan, REALTOR, Principal of TOWERS Realty and publisher of Downtown Austin Blog (aka. "DAB"), spends his time matching remarkable people with remarkable properties in Austin’s urban core. A resident owner in downtown Austin, Jude has served on the Board of the Downtown Austin Alliance (DAA) and the City of Austin Downtown Commission. Contact Jude.


  1. Doesn’t that first rendering just kill the historic nature and design of the Starr building? No, no, no. Anyone know whom did these renderings?

  2. The parking garage side is not my favorite, but they’ve kept the architecturally interesting part intact. It’s still an improvement over the parking garage and surface parking they have now.

    I was really confused about what was going on until I looked at Google Maps.

    • “It’s still an improvement over the parking garage and surface parking they have now.”

      That’s an amazingly low bar to set.

  3. That is a painfully ugly parking structure. No screening whatsoever. No effort to mitigate lighting pouring out, or headlights. Two large curbcuts impeding pedestrians. It’s my understanding that they are overparking the site, with hopes to enter into a Parking Enterprise deal with the city. I sure hope the city does not participate, does not encourage this type of poor design and inappropriate conglomeration of parking on this small site.

  4. That is a lot of parking. With curb cuts on both Colorado and 5th. Looks way over parked. A typical project such as this would have parking take up approximately 45% of the building mass. The automobile continues to dominate and this stretch of downtown is already dominated by parking structures. I hate to see our downtown street walls lined with structured parking.

  5. That’s a pretty ugly building they’ve designed there. The architect really wanted to lead with an exterior fire escape?

    • Anastasia Beaverhausen says

      That’s not a fire escape; they’re called “stairs”. They’re required (by building/fire code) in two opposite corners of each floor, and one of the other two possible opposite corners is a ramp for vehicles to enter/exit the structure (because it’s a *parking* structure). So just where would you put the stairs? Having the stairs outside of heated/cooled space also eliminates the emergency ventilation requirements (fire = smoke) of an internal stair shaft.

      Besides, it makes the corner a lot more interesting than a plain glassed-in staircase, which, facing southwest, would require tens of tons of air conditioning capacity. Or would you waste the view from that corner with a plain concrete wall?

      • I’d probably put this thing you call “stars” (thanks for the lesson! I love learning!) in a place where, you know, architecturally attractive buildings put them. Not as the primary feature in the front corner facade.

        They don’t make the corner look interesting, they make the corner look like a back alley.

  6. Austin Healy says

    Those renderings are almost as bad as the April 1st post about Naus going out of business…

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