There’s plenty of competition around these parts, but the Perennial might be the most exciting office tower planned in downtown Austin at the moment. Aside from its stunning looks, the real draw of the 46-floor project by Cielo Property Group is its potential for creating a memorable place for the public rather than simply its own office tenants, by way of a ground-level pedestrian paseo providing access to a large number of retail spaces expected to host new restaurants and bars alongside lush landscaping and a 28-foot waterfall feature — the project is really going for it here.
Since Cielo owns the full block at Fourth and Brazos Streets, the Perennial is simply the first phase of a plan to ultimately raise two towers at this site next door to each other, and that eye-catching pedestrian paseo on the ground level will connect the heart of the whole complex, eventually expanding to contain something like 10 separate retail spaces across three levels — basically an open-air market at the base of the tower, a place you’ll have ample reasons to visit even if you never see the inside of an office here. (The location of the tower also places it directly on Fourth Street’s upcoming pedestrian and transit axis planned as part of Project Connect.)
It’s obvious that the tower’s public-facing design has the potential to become a great new downtown space, but to really understand its possible impact on city life and the finer points of its design by a team including global architecture firm Perkins & Will along with the locals at Michael Hsu Office of Architecture and landscape architects Ten Eyck, you’ve got to step inside — the renderings don’t do it justice.
Architectural visualization firm TMRW has made a closer look possible, with a 3D virtual “SpaceWalk” of the building’s ground floor, “Sky Garden” tenant amenity space at the 20th floor, and two views of its office levels. It’s an impressive piece of tech showing off an impressive building, and you could spend a lot of time getting lost in here — just make sure you hit the “options” tab and select the ground level to get an inside look at the building’s paseo space, which we consider its crown jewel: