Is “Facebook Employee No. 6” planning a hotel in East Austin?
Ezra Callahan, aka. Facebook’s sixth hire, decided to invest in building a chic, eco-friendly, boutique hotel brand — Arrive Hotels.
There is no official announcement, but it appears that Ezra is hot for Austin and is planning another Arrive Hotel at Sixth and Chicon. Specifically a 5-story hotel, totaling 80 units with restaurants on the bottom facing the street, totaling about 12,000 square feet. The project site is currently occupied by a Goodwill office building, which would be demolished. Burton Baldridge is connected as lead architect.
“After spending several years working on a product that’s all about connecting people virtually, I really liked the idea of trying to build physical spaces that did the same thing,” Callahan told Condé Nast Traveler.
The internet yields many articles from reporters gushing over his concept “Arrive Hotel” the first of which is being installed in Palm Springs, California, and which Conde Nast even billed as the “Hotel of the Future”.
The area is rife with redevelopment, starting with “Fourth &” condos (at 4th & Chicon). Adjacent to the Fourth & site, Eastside Station, a 300-unit luxury apartment building is slated to opening late 2015. And across the street on the same block as Arrive the Arnold Oil Redevelopment is underway on a three-acre lot, with a proposed 90,000 square feet of office space and 330 apartment units.
The neighborhood is transforming before our eyes, which leads us to….
One Two East hearing slated for Feb. 9
The contentious One Two East multi-family proposal, next to Franklin Barbecue, is slated to be heard by the Austin Planning Commission on Feb. 9, and City Council on Feb. 11.
The project, which is fiercely opposed by a group of community activists, initially was slated to be heard in January. The hearing was delayed probably to give city staff time to hone in the traffic impact analysis, as the opposition is rallying around the issue and it is likely to be the subject of debate.
The developers are seeking a zoning change that would allow them to build up to 180 feet, instead of the 150 feet allowed by current zoning. It is my opinion that One Two East as proposed at 180 feet provides a clear community benefit (it would include a grocer and pharmacy) to a neighborhood that faces changes in their way of life regardless if site is developed at 150-feet as allowed or 180-feet.
Given the media attention to the opposition to the project, there probably will be plenty of media coverage, but here is a link to where you can watch the Planning Commission live on Feb. 9 on your computer or phone.