Many of the swanky downtown Austin condo projects present prospective buyers with images of the actual view from the units they are considering. This is an amazing feat considering that many of these buildings have not even broken ground.
For example, here are two “views” from future units in the Austonian — a 50+ story luxury project on Congress which is currently just a hole in the ground. The first image shows the West view from the 11th floor:
The second images shows the same view from a unit on the 54th floor:
Sooooo . . . . .what is their trick? How can they capture accurate views from hundreds of units in different positions on different floors. Do they use airplanes? Helicopters? No! They, like many condo developers across the United States, depend on Austin-based “Blimp Photo Services” to get these special images.
Here is the summary from the Statesman:
In recent years, Lockhart’s 16-year-old Austin-based Blimp Photo Services business has been buoyed locally and nationally by the boom in high-rise condominium construction. He has taken panoramic aerial views of planned residential and commercial buildings in major U.S. cities and Canada. . . In Austin, he has photographed the viewsheds — the technical name for the views from a particular vantage point — for most of the downtown condominium projects that are under construction or are being planned. They include the Shore, Spring, the Austonian, the W hotel/condominium project and the Four Seasons Residences, a project that is expected break ground soon next to the Four Seasons Hotel.Brett Denton, a partner with Ardent Residential, which is developing the luxury Four Seasons high-rise, said Lockhart’s photography “has been invaluable in helping our buyers better visualize the views from the various unit locations on different floors of our building.”
While I am not sure how one gets started in personal blimp photography, it does serve an important market niche. For anyone who is planning to lay down big bucks on a high-rise condo that has not been built, it makes all the difference in the world to get a blimps-eye perspective of your future view.