Home News Congress Avenue’s First Residential Tower Plan in Years Takes Shape, Maybe – TOWERS

Congress Avenue’s First Residential Tower Plan in Years Takes Shape, Maybe – TOWERS

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Aerial view of the proposed tower site from a city employee’s report on the project.Image: City of Austin

plan to build 55 storey tower Including the apartment complex behind the historic storefront of Congress Avenue It will be the first new home on what is known as Main Street in Texas. austonia condo In 2010 — but the proposal faces scrutiny from the city’s Historic Buildings Commission, due to many protections and design restrictions on this important downtown corridor.

The plan is currently only linked to a dumb local real estate private equity firm pennybacker capital, Build a tower addition over the historic storefront from 308 To 318 Congress Avenue — The most prominent structure in this assembly is the WB Smith Building and 316 Congress Avenue, Dating back to 1884, but perhaps best known for Vulcan Gas Company A music venue in the late 1960s.

Image: Clayton Corte

The actual appearance of the new tower is unknown at this time, but the document was put on the agenda for the Historic Buildings Commission’s Nov. 2 meeting as part of the application for a certificate of suitability for the project. Provides many obscure details.Presentation by a local architectural firm Clayton Corte here, Congress Avenue Overlay District — While not part of the tower plan, along with the impact from the presence of the historic Koppel building next door, which prompts additional setbacks on the north side of the project to prevent the new building from overpowering the original character of the old structure. .

Image: Clayton Corte

Image: Clayton Corte

According to a presentation to HLC, the project plans to preserve or rebuild all facades facing Congress Avenue, removing the back wall of the structure for the tower’s new footprint. You can find more details in the plan below.

Image: Clayton Corte

If built to these preliminary designs, the structure would include four retail spaces on the ground floor of the preserved storefront, with six levels of underground parking and a seven-level garage above the lobby. , for a total of 625 spaces. great parking lot Given the inherent walkability of Congress Avenue. The tower above the garage contains 450 residential units.

Image: Clayton Corte

Image: Clayton Corte

We are usually the first to support smart infill in historic cloisters like Congress Avenue, but the presentation of the project seen here leaves many details unclear and the architect’s illustrations is not particularly easy to visualize.The impact of buildings on the historic environment—and As you can imagine, HLC’s Building Review Board has deeper concerns than we do.

Implement deeper retreats. Do not demolish the rear or side portions of landmark structures. Restore or incorporate adjacent buildings. New construction must be subordinated to the block’s landmark buildings, including the adjacent Coppell building. Preserves cityscapes, setbacks and heights, masses, and window patterns.

— Building Review Board Feedback, 316 Congress

The Commission’s recommendation is to defer this item to the next meeting on 14 December, and to provide applicants with detailed information, including detailed illustrations of potential buildings, on the anticipated demolition of the project. It is to ask to deliver with a request for deeper retreat and increased inhibitions. Building something new on Congress Avenue is not easy. It is often at odds with HLC’s old-fashioned view of this kind of growth when alternatives often seem to be permissive. Historic buildings that are not used are decaying —but in this case, I think the developers should show a little more of their work before getting the go-ahead.

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