The Block 16 office tower, first announced in 2020 at the southern half of the block bound by San Jacinto Boulevard, Trinity, and Second Streets in downtown Austin, has a new developer sharing the wheel and an all-new design on deck. National real estate investors Carr Properties announced today in a press release that the firm is partnering with the locals at Manifold Real Estate to develop the tower, now planned as a 43-story office building containing up to 738,000 square feet atop its site directly west of the Austin Convention Center.
The building’s new look from Gensler Austin is a significant change from what we’ve seen in previous renderings — views of the earlier design showed an oddly off-center structure with a cantilevered western overhang of its upper floors, along with a facade of dark, angled plates reminiscent of traditional Japanese armor. In contrast, these new renderings show a curved, multi-terraced tower in keeping with the more organic indoor-outdoor architectural trends we’ve often seen emphasized as part of a post-pandemic workplace in other recently-announced office projects.
With an emphasis on best-in-class sustainability, efficient floorplates and state-of-the-art design, Block 16 will offer its customers a tremendous workplace experience. The project will include a market-leading fitness facility, multiple meeting areas and first-class food and beverage offerings. It is intentionally designed to offer a cutting-edge workplace environment that takes advantage of the latest sustainability and wellness features.
Designed by Gensler, each floor will offer 10-foot, floor-to-ceiling windows and a virtually column-free workplace environment designed to maximize efficiency and access to light and air. Additionally, at Block 16, Carr is planning to unveil an approach to indoor air quality intended to maximize the health and wellness of the customers in the building.
— Block 16 Press Release, March 31
For the record, this is actually the third tower design we’ve seen for this site over the last few years — they’ve gotten progressively more interesting each time, but we really hope this one sticks. According to today’s press release, the Block 16 project is currently available for preleasing, with an expected completion in spring 2026.
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