The Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs approved low income tax credits late last month for 70 affordable apartment projects across the state to the tune of nearly $85 million — and one of these communities will soon rise in the heart of the Brentwood neighborhood of North Central Austin.
June West, an 80-unit mixed-income community set to transform the 1.13-acre site of the Driscoll Motors auto dealership at 1200 and 1206 West Koenig Lane, is a joint project of Saigebrook Development and O-SDA Industries, both prominent firms in the state’s affordable housing sector and unique in the world of real estate development as fully women-owned operations.
Located at the northwest corner of West Koenig Lane and Grover Avenue a few blocks removed from McCallum High School, the project’s site is rapidly becoming a nexus of dense development in a neighborhood largely occupied by single-family homes, with the completed Pearl apartments directly across the street at the former First Texas Honda dealership, and a 300-unit apartment project planned one block further south at the shuttered longtime bowling alley and enchilada hotspot Dart Bowl.
According to the developers, the community’s 80 residences will be a mix of studio, one, two, and three-bedroom units. Eight units will be rented to those earning 30 percent or less of the area’s Median Family Income (MFI), which in 2021 was $20,800 for an individual and $29,650 for a family of four. 30 units are set at 50 percent MFI, an income of $34,650 for an individual and $49,450 for a family of four. 37 units will rent at 60 percent MFI, $41,580 for an individual and up to $59,340 for a family of four. The remaining five units in the building will rent at market rates.
An advantage to this location is that the dealership property is already zoned for mixed-use commercial, meaning the project will not require a rezoning case. It’s unclear if the June West community would encounter significant opposition, since affordable development is generally what neighborhood advocates say they would prefer to see in lieu of market-rate growth, but even with the support of surrounding neighbors the existing zoning removes one major speed bump.
There are currently no renderings of the June West project available, but according to O-SDA president Megan Lasch, the building will look very similar to the firm’s nearby affordable apartment development known as the Abali, which is approaching completion near the Mueller neighborhood at 4611 North I-35. Though a groundbreaking or completion date for this new community is currently unknown, following the state’s approval of its tax credits the project has filed a site plan with the city this week, with its permitting process now underway.