Architect Ziegler Cooper has posted new renderings of Gables Park Plaza’s nascent mixed-use neighbor. Site plan approval from the city has been extended through February of 2012.
Near the intersection of Cesar Chavez and Lamar, back in the day this site was home to Cedar Door (910 Cesar Chavez) which was moved to Brazos @ 2nd.
I like the design. It successfully handles a few site specific challenges, notably a Capitol View Corridor and train track. Thanks to downtown resident Mitchell McGovern for the heads up! Pics after the jump…
Jude Galligan says
Construction to begin next week! (link)
So, are they going to build a tunnel under the train track? This render ( http://downtownaustinblog.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/park-plaza-austin-ziegler-cooper-8.jpg ) makes it look like maybe they are. I hope so. If they don’t, it will sadly be kind of isolated from the rest of the area. That street in-between the buildings will be a cool little area if they dig a tunnel to 3rd Street. It would make for nice connectivity between Spring, Whole Foods, the Seaholm development, Austin Public Library, the two towers planned for the Austin Energy Control Center site and the Lady Bird Lake Trail. I think it’s important to connect all of these. I hope they build a tunnel.
My understanding on the tunnel is it is not likely at all to be built. The railroad track is not about to let the city tunnel under the existing track and risk its stability. So the best alternative is for the city to build a completely new track elevated bridge/track, switch the existing track to that and then build their tunnel. That’s pretty expensive and will the railroad even agree?
yes, it’s a lot of wishful thinking and always has been – from way back around 2000-2001 when the Seaholm plan first started screwing with the (much better) original Pfluger bridge designs.
UP cannot be forced to do anything – not even by TXDOT – the city’s a flea next to them. They have no reason to consent to the disruption required to move them to new tracks.
Ah, Mike. Always the optimist…
Here is what the Statesman had to say about the tunnel.
But recently, a bunch of activity in the area may suggest that UP is moving forward with the new tracks. I large delivery of new RR ties have been delivered. Hummm?
Nice find and nice detective work. It’s hard for me to believe they wouldn’t build this underpass, but where the funding comes/came from is a big question. I mean, what possible other reason would there be for ordering all those RR ties? For that little stretch of track? I suspect part of the funding could have come from the Park Plaza Tower and Gables Park Plaza people, since it’s in their interest to connect these developments with the rest of the area.
It’s also interesting that it’s only a pedestrian tunnel. They have the roundabout there, which would come in handy if they wanted to connect the street. But, then again, the intersection with 3rd St. would be all diagonal and funky.
Anyway, it’s nice to know they are at least trying to get this done, rather than just not bothering.
Very nice…wondering if Austin can handle all the new housing though…I sense a bubble coming again…hope I am wrong though..<3
“all the new housing”? Downtown? What else is likely to be built in the next two years? The only other new building activity I’m aware of are the dueling “convention” hotels and the commercial building on Bowie. Maybe 7 Rio finally takes off but I’m not holding my breath. Jude, am I missing anything?
Jude Galligan says
No new residential site plans have been approved, that I’m aware of. Post is under construction on S. Lamar, and the project on Riverside and I35 is active.
Austin Healy says
Does this seem like it will break ground soon?
Lance Hunter says
Interesting. If I’m reading the renderings right, the pedestrian bridge will almost drop you off at this place’s front door. (I’m assuming I’m reading this right, but then again the rendering seems to imagine Cesar Chavez street becoming a grassy hill.) If that is the case, I really hope they have something along the lines of a good ground-level cafe or juice bar there for relaxing after a day of biking or jogging.
Jude Galligan says
You’re reading it correctly, and your expectations for retail are dead-on.
Regarding Lance Hunter’s comment. How does one go about finding out what retailers may be interested in these spaces? I completely agree with the juice bar/ cafe concept and would love to get more information.
Very nice! Those poor people in the Spring, though…
Spring has nothing to fear from this. Maybe the very lowest floors on the SE side. In the Spring model there was a building roughly comparable to this. The more buildings, the more residents the better. Density means more retail, more activity, etc. That is why you live downtown.