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- Two Austin-based companies have teamed to form a new business that plans to build 1,000 apartments in four projects over the next two to three years across Central Texas, company officials said.
- The first two projects are expected to be in the Lakeline Mall area, and one could be under construction before the end of the year.
- The partnership comes as the region’s apartment market is experiencing a resurgence. Rents rose to their highest level on record by the end of 2010 an average of $731 a month for the average one-bedroom and $989 for the average two-bedroom and leasing levels soared to an all-time high in 2010, according to Capitol Market Research, an Austin-based real estate consulting firm.
- The first project could be on 22 acres at the northwest corner of Parmer Lane and Spectrum Drive, part of the Davis Springs Corporate Center project that HPI Real Estate and Captex developed, or on a 20-acre site in the same area that HPI and Captex hope to have under contract by Friday, said Fred Eppright, a partner with Captex along with John Simmons.
- An application was filed Monday for a zoning change to a multifamily use for the 22 acres, he said.
- HPI Residential intends to build apartments at Davis Springs even if it acquires the other site. It has an additional 25 to 30 acres on the 100-acre Davis Springs site that could be rezoned for apartments.
Projects will add 780 apartments along East Riverside corridor
- Two apartment projects announced several years ago along East Riverside Drive are ready to move forward as the local multifamily market heats up. With a third project under way, the plans will add 780 residential units to an area that has seen little new development in recent years.
- Developers say that over the next several years, their projects will bring new investments and help reshape an area with a high crime rateAMLI Residential was the first developer to build a major new project in the area. The 375-unit AMLI South Shore apartment complex opened last year, and AMLI said leasing is ahead of expectations, with occupancy now at 73 percent. Aside from apartments with amenities such as a swimming pool and on-site fitness center, the project has attracted new street-level retail.
- That success, coupled with a loosening of financing for new apartment development in recent months, has prompted other developers to start projects.
- The new projects come as Austin’s apartment market turns in landlords’ favor.
- In a new report, Austin Investor Interests, which tracks the apartment market, said that on the heels of a banner year that saw significant gains in both rent and occupancy, the first quarter of 2011 confirms that the Austin apartment market has finally set a new course.
- Breaking historical trends that produced only one positive quarter per year, the first quarter continued to see increases in both occupancy and rent, the report said.
- The report said the local apartment market should continue to see growth during the next 12 to 18 months. However, it cautioned that many of the new tenants are out-of-state job seekers who may or may not find work. Another concern is a construction pipeline that includes over 20,000 new units.
Developers eyeing boutique hotel, apartments just south of downtown
- A failed downtown-area condominium project could be revived as apartments, and a fast-food restaurant could give way to a boutique hotel-condominium project, as developers move to take advantage of Austin’s strengthening economy and an improved climate for construction financing.
- Crescent Resources is evaluating whether to revive its former Aquaterra condominium project at 210 Barton Springs Road, as apartments, albeit under a different name,
- The apartment market is recovering very nicely, Cureton said. Demand for apartments and rents have risen substantially.
- Aquaterra, announced in 2006, was designed to be 19 stories high, with 173 units. But Crescent shelved the project during the recession.
- Brett Rhode, an Austin architect who designed the original project, said the project is being reconfigured for apartments.
- The atmosphere is much more positive now than even a few months ago in terms of moving forward with projects in the downtown area, said Rhode, principal with Rhode Partners. It’s likely we will see some of our stalled projects come back to life, giving us a chance to rethink and improve our designs.
- Switching to apartments would be an obvious choice for developers who own sites that already have entitlements, he said.
- Since the beginning of the year, the capital markets have loosened up, and the apartment fundamentals have gotten better, he said.
Crestview Station moves forward
Multifamily component offers 300 live-work units and loft-style Austin apartments
- Plans are on to turn a former North Austin industrial site into the $200 million Crestview Station, which will be one of Austin’s biggest transit-oriented developments. A commuter rail station is planned for Lamar and Airport boulevards The project, which is bordered on one side by the Capital Metro commuter rail line, is designed as a community where people live, work and shop without having to drive.
- High Street Residential, a Trammell Crow subsidiary, will build the multifamily component. The mix will include live-work units and loft-style Austin apartments. T his projects adds 300 apartments in Austin and 60,000 square feet of retail.