Though we’re no strangers to enthusiastic design coverage of upcoming downtown Austin condo, apartment, and office towers, nothing beats video for eye-popping views of the large-scale construction projects changing our city’s skyline every day.
That’s why we’re happy to see construction firm Flintco, behind developer Intracorp’s upcoming 44 East Avenue condo tower, putting a little more effort than usual into the visual documentation of its 49-story project now in progress at the eastern edge of the Rainey Street District with a series of episodic documentary films that go beyond simple construction footage and investigate every aspect of the development, including the process and people behind its design, construction, and marketing.
It’s called “Beyond the Fence: The Story of 44 East Avenue” and here’s the first episode, covering the building’s groundbreaking — and the sudden changes to the construction process made necessary by the outbreak of COVID-19:
Produced by Flintco marketing director Tim Garbutt and videographer John Whitton of Smart City Media, new episodes in this series of short videos will be released throughout the 44 East Avenue project’s 2.5 year construction period, followed by a full-length documentary Garbutt says will be “worthy of the red carpet at the Paramount Theatre during SXSW.” Remember when we did that stuff in person?
“Because this is Austin,” Garbutt says, “we are including original music with each new episode, starting with ‘Building America’ featured in Episode 1.” This extremely Springsteen-esque ode to the working class, which plays over the video’s credits, was written and recorded by Garbutt and produced at Austin’s 512 Studios. Yes, you are reading this correctly — the marketing director of the 44 East Avenue tower’s construction management company wrote and recorded his own song for the soundtrack of this documentary, something I’m fairly confident has never happened before in the entire history of downtown Austin development. Here’s the music video:
As you’ll likely agree, these two videos are incredible content — far beyond the promotion of a lot of tower projects around here, and evidence that the folks at Flintco are more than happy to not always take themselves 100 percent seriously, a bar that is sometimes difficult to clear in the world of construction management. These buildings and the process of their creation are neat, and it’s nice to see people acknowledge that while having a little fun with it. I’m literally on the edge of my seat for Episode 2.