July 25, 2017
It's hard to come by vacant land in downtown Austin these days, and the few empty blocks that remain are quickly being scooped up by developers. One of the area's latest projects is at 308 Guadalupe Street.
Earlier this month, Travis County closed on a $430 million deal to lease out the site in the heart of downtown.
It is currently a parking lot and takes up an entire city block. The county says it could potentially hold a 25-story tower that includes office space, hotel rooms, retail and apartments. (more)
July 17, 2017
Austin remains atop the wish list for shops and restaurants of all sizes looking to expand, retail experts say.
That includes both local chains and national outlets.
A new report from Weitzman, a commercial real estate firm with offices across Texas, found that the Austin metro area has the strongest retail occupancy rate among all major U.S. markets.
The rate currently sits at 96 percent, according to Weitzman. (more)
July 12, 2017
Two more apartment towers are set to rise in the Rainey Street district on the eastern edge of downtown Austin now that enough condo owners in an existing property have agreed to sell their units.
Genesis Real Estate Group bought the Villas on Town Lake on June 30, clearing the way for the Dallas-based developer to move ahead with plans for a roughly 40-story high-rise and another of undetermined height at 80 Red River St., the Austin American-Statesman reports. (more)
July 6, 2017
3M Co. has agreed to sell its 156-acre campus in far Northwest Austin to a local real estate investor and now plans to shift hundreds of employess to a new site about 15 miles away. (more)
June 30, 2017
Construction began recently on a mixed-use project years in the making that will reshape a slice of East Austin directly across I-35 from the Central Business District.
The roughly 10-acre development, between Fifth and Fourth Streets and stretching east from I-35 to the Plaza Saltillo MetroRail station, will turn six blocks into roughly 800 apartments (with 141 units, or roughly 18 percent, reserved for low-income renters), 140,000 square feet of office space (mostly in an eight-story tower next to the interstate), 110,000 square feet of retail space with restaurants and 1.4 acres of public space. (more)
June 26, 2017
This week, some Austinites might have noticed a change to the downtown skyline.
Construction has progressed to the point that the Independent - nicknamed the "Jenga Tower" - has started takin on elements of its defining look as the 58-story condominium project rises toward its place as the city's tallest building and the tallest residential building west of the Mississippi. (more)
June 21, 2017
A new co-working space is coming to downtown Austin. This one is different from what you may be used to, though. It isn't a hub for tech entrepreneurs or Internet startups. The Refinery, which will officially open its doors in fall 2017, is a co-working space and studio for Austin's artists and other creatives. (more)
June 19, 2017
Central Health envisions a high-density, mixed-use development for its now-empty University Medical Center Brackenridge campus in downtown Austin. For some, this brings to mind luxury apartments, expensive restaurants and high-end boutiques - prompting calls from some community advocates for a project that includes affordable housing and amenities open to everyone.
While there's an obvious need for Central Health to make money from leasing out the property in order to carry out health care initiatives for under- and uninsured residents, officials with Travis County's hospital district say they are also committed to meeting those community goals. (more)
June 13, 2017
More pieces are falling into place to transform the old Highland Mall site in North Central Austin.
A pair of four-story apartment buildings with 390 units combined and 25,000 square feet of retail are headed to the site, the Austin American-Statesman reports. (more)
June 8, 2017
Business Insider named Austin the most desirable place to live in the country based on recent data. (more)
May 9, 2017
The entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in Austin, says WalletHub's report on the best cities to start a business. Austin ranks No. 8 on this year's list - an impressive jump from the No. 20 spot in 2016. (more)
March 9, 2017
The vibrant Texan city of Austin has been ranked the best American state capital to live in, thanks in large part to its economic strength and high-quality healthcare. According to a study by personal finance website, WalletHub, the top 10 state capitals to live in in 2017 include: Austin, TX, Boise, ID, Bismarck, ND, Lincoln, NE, Madison, WI, Montpellier, VT, Concord, NH, Raleigh, NC, Salt Lake City, UT, Cheyenne, WY. (more)
March 7, 2017
Tenant in downtown Austin office buildings have been loudly complaining about rising rents - not because of the original terms of a lease but because of increased property taxes and other operating costs passed on by landlords.
Cushman & Wakefield's local office research team crunched the numbers and the outcome is startling. Since 2011, operating costs, referred to as OPEX, have jumped about 55 percent-from $13.14 per square foot to $20.33 per square foot for seven significant but unidentified office properties in the Central Business District. In one building, the increase in operating costs escalated 25 percent in just the past year. (more)
February 27, 2017
Austin's strong overall economic growth means the region is still a good place for startup entrepreneurs, but the influence of small business in the local economy is significantly lower than in some peer cities.
Austin dropped four spots to No. 5 on American City Business Journal's annual ranking of the best U.S. cities for small business entrepreneurs. Austin's stellar post-recession economic growth - the region's real per-capita gross domestic product grew by 10.6 percent over the past five years, the ninth fastest rate in the nation - may also be making it difficult for small businesses to expand, considering commercial real estate space and talent is hard to come by. (more)
February 21, 2017
Developers have built hundreds of apartments in the area, and more are on the way. They're primarily targeting blocks on either side of Sixth Street in proximity to the Plaza Saltillo commuter rail station at Fifth and Comal streets. Developers have also added about 140,000 square feet of office space, and they've proposed adding some 770,000 square feet in the coming years. (more)
February 7, 2017
U.S. News and World Report has confirmed what we Austinites have known all along (and have tried to keep secret, TBH): Austin is the best place to live in America.
The publication ranked the country's top 100 largest metropolitan areas based on affordability, job prospects and quality of life. Austin bumped Denver, Colo., from the top spot it held last year to No. 2. Rounding out the top five are San Jose, Calif., Washington D.C., and Fayetteville, Ark. (more)
January 18, 2017
The Austin Planning Commission approved the Plaza Saltillo proposed mixed-use development for a zoning variance Tuesday with a vote of 9-4.
The long-awaited project has stalled since the landowner, Capital Metro Transportation Authority, picked Endeavor Real Estate Group to develop the 10.5-acre property in 2014. Last Tuesday, the project picked up some momentum after the Planning Commission voted to approve zoning and height variances for the project, both of which were met with a mix of scrutiny and praise from commissioners and the public.
Here are five things to know about the Plaza Saltillo MUD before it heads to City Council for final approval. (more)
January 9, 2017
The Family that owns the Austin American-Statesman has chosen Austin-based Endeavor Real Estate Group to partner with on future redevelopment of the prime 18.9-acre waterfront property just south of downtown where the newspaper operates.
In December 2015, an entity comprised of member of the Atlanta-based Cox family bought the Statesman property from Cox Enterprises, the privately held company that owns the Statesman - a move local real estate experts said signaled that the family was positioning the site for redevelopment. Developers have said the Statesman site - which has an appraised value of $62 million, according to the Travis Central Appraisal District - is one of the most prized tracts in the city. (more)
December 21, 2016
Grocery chain H-E-B has purchased 17.2 acres near the Austin airport, the company confirmed to the Austin American-Statesman, adding to its development pipeline a growing part of the Central Texas region. The tract, at the southeast corner of FM 973 and Texas 71, is H-E-B's first land acquisition in the Del Valle area. The purchase price was not disclosed. H-E-B said it doesn't yet have a development plan for the site, most of which is part of a 390-acre swath zoned for a planned mixed-use development called Velocity Crossing. (more)
December 14, 2016
The Texas highway windfall has begun wafting Austin's way. Central Texas would see more than $1.3 billion in new spending on highways in the next five to 10 years, most of it on Interstate 35, Loop 360 and Texas 71, under a program for specific projects due to come before the Texas Transportation Commission by February. That would include $250 million, about 80 percent of it from the Texas Department of Transportation, to replace traffic signals on Loop 360 with overpasses and almost $900 million for Interstate 35 changes. (more)
December 9, 2016
NAI Partners Austin volunteers for Austin's 30th Annual Coats for Kids Coat Drive
Our Austin office recently gave back to the community in a big way, volunteering for Austin’s 30th Annual Coats for Kids coat drive. As part of the effort, the charitable organization is expecting to give away around 35,000 coats.
December 7, 2016
Potentially paving the way for thousands of new homes in Central Austin, neighbors and developers have come to an agreement on the size and scope of a controversial mixed-use development. The Grove at Shoal Creek was the focus of months of debate and contention between developer ARG Bull Creek Ltd. and a group of neighbors called the Bull Creek Road Coalition. The project is located on 75 acres near 45th Street and Bull Creek Road... (more)
December 6, 2016
Presidium Group LLC continues its penetration in the Riverside Drive corridor with the acquistion of two more student-housing projects - University Estates and University Village, which encompass 67 buildings on 66 acres. That's come prime real estate in an area that is emerging as one of the city's hottest markets, given its close access to downtown Austin, the University of Texas and as the primary route to Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. Oracle Corp. is building a huge campus nearby. (more)
December 2, 2016
All three northbound lanes of MoPac are now open between Lady Bird Lake and Enfield Road following the completion of a construction project overnight.
The roadway had been reduced to two lanes earlier this year for the installment of an express lane underpass that will eventually allow drivers to cross under MoPac from Cesar Chavez to access the northbound Express Lane. Authorities said the opening should improve traffic flow in the area. (more)
November 30, 2016
Lake Travis swells, shrinks and swells again. Old Mueller Airport's runways disappear as Austin-Bergstrom International Airport adds new runways. State Highway 130 pops up to the east and extends to the south. These are some of the more eye-catching details that can be seen in a new time-lapse feature from Google Earth, the internet titan's web-based cartographic service. (more)
November 29, 2016
South by Southwest is in line to get some new digs. An entity connected to the festival organizer is proposing a 12-story office tower in downtown Austin that would be valued at $41 million, according to filings with the city of Austin and the state. (more)
November 23, 2016
Dozens of co-working spaces have opened through Central Austin since David Walker said he and his partners first brought the concept to the city in 2008. After increases in rent forced him to close his East Austin co-working space, Conjunctured, Walker - who has since helped launch a global co-working consulting company - said he saw what Austinites were missing: alternative workspaces, or places where communities of like-minded people could gather to work and exchange ideas in productive environments. (more)
November 22, 2016
Travis County has received proposals from eight development firms or teams that are interested in leasing or buying a prime county-owned block just south of Republic Square Park in downtown Austin. The proposals submitted range from purchasing the block outright to developing a large mixed-use building, to "everything in between" according to county officials. Zoning would allow for nearly 2 million square feet of development on the block, which the county this year voted to sell or lease. The block is bounded by Third, Fourth, Guadalupe and San Antonio streets. The heigh for any buildings on the site would not be limited by rules that protect views of the state Capitol dome. (more)
November 21, 2016
The Lone Star State has improved on its ranking by Forbes as one of the best states in the U.S. for business. Texas ranked No. 4 overall in the nation, according to Forbes' annual Best State for Business list, up from No. 6 in 2015. The rankings compare states based on business climates and how the states are positioned to succeed in the future. (more)
November 17, 2016
The four stages of CRE market cycle can be seen in the rise, peak, fall and bottom of office vacancies, a cyclic pattern that repeated itself over two market cycles from 2000-2007 and from 2007-2013. Austin's CRE market has been cyclical, with a duration of 6.5-7.0 years.
Rather than moving into the anticipated falling phase of the market cycle in late 2013 or early 2014, Austin's vacancy instead continued to decline to a low of 9.1% as of Q3 2016, creating an ever stronger office market. Vacancy will remain relatively flat in the near term, but may increase some with new deliverables. Currently, Austin has 47 buildings with 2.5 million sq. ft. under construction, but 64.1% is already preleased. Most of this RBA is expected to deliver before 2018.
We can expect some modest increases in vacancy up toward 10% in 2017, but then declining quickly back into low-9%-range in 2018 and lower thereafter. Austin's office market cycle is out of phase due to steady new supply being met by high demand, thereby preventing vacancy from entering the falling phase again.(more)
November 14, 2016
In a major victory for Austin Mayor Steve Adler, the $720 million bond to improve Austin roads has been approved by voters. The cost of the Smart Corridor Plan, marked as Proposition 1 on voters' ballots, is expected to be close to $1.5 billion, or double the amount voters approved. Now that the bond has passed, the city will look beyond taxpayer dollars to get the other half funded. (more)
November 1, 2016
Overpasses and more lanes could be added in the coming years to Capital of Texas Highway, a key connection for many Austin businesses and a gateway to scores of affluent neighborhoods outside the urban core. (more)
October 31, 2016
Developers plan to build two more office buildings at the Domain that would be the tallest towers to date at the North Austin mixed-use development often referred to as the city's "second downtown." The towers would rise 15 and 17 stories and each building would have 315,000 square feet of space. (more)
October 28, 2016
NAI Partners Officially Debuts in Austin
David Dawkins, Managing Vice President, to Lead Expansion
NAI Partners, one of the largest independently-owned commercial real estate firms in Texas, formally announced its entrance into Austin and that it has hired office veteran David Dawkins as Managing Vice President to develop and lead its expansion into the Austin Market.
Mr. Dawkins comes to NAI Partners from ECR – Equitable Commercial Realty where he helped grow their tenant representation practice. Tim Laine, formerly of Cushman & Wakefield, has joined as Senior Associate; and rounding out NAI Partners’ Austin team is Ryan Clark as an Associate.
“We believe David is the perfect person to lead our new Austin office,” said Jon Silberman, Managing Partner of NAI Partners. “The breadth and depth of his experience, market knowledge and dedication to client service will be of great benefit throughout the company as we continue to expand and enhance the range of commercial real estate services we offer our clients.”
According to ULI Emerging Trends in Real Estate, of the top 75 U.S. markets to watch, Austin has ascended to the number-two position.
“With the strong economics of the Austin market, this is an opportunity for NAI Partners to strike while the iron’s hot,” said Griff Bandy, Partner-in-Charge for Austin. “We are excited to build our firm regionally across several of the largest major cities in Texas. We will continue to pursue top talent in the Austin market to grow our dynamic team of professionals. We see the synergy among these three markets, and are very excited about the future of NAI Partners.”
Mr. Dawkins is a 12-year veteran of the industry and has experience in many aspects of commercial real estate, having represented numerous firms in the lease or purchase of office and industrial properties. Prior to ECR, Mr. Dawkins was with Commercial Real Estate Solutions where he developed and implemented a turnkey process for companies evaluating renewals, expansions, relocations and purchases.
As the market leader, Mr. Dawkins is actively working on building the office with the goal of hiring an additional 10 brokers within the next two years. Although he will initially focus on building the brokerage arm—geared towards the office and industrial sectors—the company will also move into developing and leading other lines of business in Austin to work in concert with our Houston operations.
“This is an exciting time for NAI Partners and I am proud to be a part of its growth,” said Mr. Dawkins. “I look forward to building and leading NAI Partners’ Austin office. With talent like Tim and Ryan to help assist in creating a dynamic team, I am thrilled to join such an impressive group of real estate professionals.”
Headquartered in Houston, NAI Partners has thoughtfully and strategically expanded its reach throughout Texas, having previously opened a San Antonio office in 2015.
Expanding to Austin and San Antonio has also served as a catalyst to developing new lines of business, which include a fully-integrated Landlord Services division which encompasses property management, third-party leasing, construction management and project management, as well as an investment management division the company is calling its Investment Fund. The latter has been charged with assembling a portfolio of office and industrial assets worth $200 million to $250 million.
October 27, 2016
Austin has edged out Dallas in the competition for the top U.S. real estate market. Both Texas cities head the list of the best places to invest in property and develop in 2017, according to the annual Emerging Trends in Real Estate report by the Urban Land Institute and PricewaterhouseCoopers. (more)
October 19, 2016
It’s no one’s favorite topic, but every once in a while death tweaks us by the ear and whispers, “Listen man, before you and I play chess, or battleships, or Mario Kart, or whatever for your soul, you have some serious living to do.” Well, to help you with that, we’ve put together a bucket list of the 50 greatest foods in Austin to eat before you die... (more)
October 14, 2016
A section of the long-delayed MoPac Boulevard toll project — a northbound lane from near Far West Boulevard to south of Parmer Lane — will open this weekend, officials said Thursday. (more)