The tidal wave of construction on South Lamar Boulevard – near the Broken Spoke – isn’t over yet.
Plans have just been filed for a large mixed-use project, consisting of three buildings, totaling half a million square feet of office, retail and 304 apartment units. The project is another development by Ardent Residential, the same group that developed the similarly named Gibson Flats and Burnet Flats (not to mention the Four Seasons Residences downtown).
The mixed-use project — called Lamar Flats — will go in across the street from Red’s Porch. The site currently holds a Golden Corral, which will be demolished, and is next to the planned In-N-Out Burger.
Lamar Flats plans call for:
- a 4-story 125,000 square foot mixed use building
- a 5-story 158,000 square foot mixed use building
- about 137,000 square feet underground parking
- a 4-story residential building
The area in question has been the subject of years of press coverage while the world-famous Broken Spoke became flanked in by two residential rental projects. Over the past year, South Lamar has undergone a complete transformation. Six prior mixed-use projects brought nearly 2,000 new homes for people eager to live in the area, plus over 100,000 square feet for shops, restaurants, and small offices.
The development along South Lamar brings with it sweet, not just sour. As pointed out by the Austin Contrarian — South Lamar has become a destination in its own right — like downtown, the Triangle, or South Congress.
From a residential real estate standpoint, the development is boon for land owners. A transformed South Lamar is also an increased draw to those purchasing condos near the core. While it may not bring a lot of vertical development like we see elsewhere, projects like this $4.2 million townhome project on 2002 Glen Allen, also increase urban density in the area and start to become more attractive to builders.
However, the new development will also raise the ire of the existing neighborhood and through commuters who gripe about traffic. This is likely to increase the call to action they are placing on District 5 Council Member Ann Kitchen. Kitchen made South Lamar improvements one of her campaign platforms.
The city is responding accordingly and launched a study last year to look at improving the South Lamar area between Lady Bird Lake and Ben White. Another major project, like the Lamar Flats, lends inertia to the effort to bring a lot of same bike and pedestrian friendly designs that are now downtown into the South Lamar area.