Aren’t you glad the Waterline supertall broke ground in the Rainey Street District around this time last year? Otherwise, the 74-story tower planned by developers Lincoln Property Company and Kairoi Residential might have found itself in purgatory forever — or perhaps even seen its record-breaking height cut in half. But instead, this 1,022-foot monument capping off a generation of Austin’s growth will likely remain the high water mark for downtown development around here for at least a few years, assuming it takes a while for the city’s next development cycle to emerge.
Every tower that managed to secure financing and start construction this time last summer is in good shape at the moment, but we’re guessing many of the announced tower plans that haven’t broken ground yet around town aren’t happening at all. That’s especially relevant in the Rainey Street District, where more than five towers are currently under construction, including the highly visible Waterline site at the corner of Cesar Chavez and Red River Streets near Waller Creek.
With all that construction rubbing elbows simultaneously, we’re happy to get a clearer view from our friends at local real estate lending outfit Curlee Capital, who have just released another guerilla-style drone video of the Waterline construction site, shot only two days ago. It’s nearly five minutes of great footage, showing the tower’s core rising from its large corner site near the creek, and includes a cameo appearance from the Travis apartment tower next door at the three-minute mark. (The Travis has risen above its podium section already, with the apartment tower portion now underway.)
As you can see, there’s still a lot of height left to build, and we’re guessing the possibility still exists that these projects could face delays from their original timelines for completion — but to us, the fact that towers like Waterline managed to break ground just before the great “paring down” of tower plans we’re now seeing around the city is a sort of minor miracle. We’ll watch basically any video these guys post, but every small sign of progress on Waterline reminds us that this future tower might hold its height record for longer than we thought. For Towersheads, it’s must-see TV.