It’s easy to turn a blind eye to development in West Campus — after all, most of the buildings going up are designed for student housing, and serve little purpose to the general public. Lest we forget that West Campus is arguably the most walkable part of Austin, with daily goods retail and restaurants nicely intermixed with housing options.
With at least four new projects heading to the area exceeding 15 stories in height, keeping an eye on the region is important from a design perspective alone. It wasn’t long ago that the University Neighborhood Overlay (UNO) gave the district the freedom to build taller, and it looks like developers are following through.
Lately, you’ll see nearly as many cranes in West Campus as you will downtown — here’s what they’re working on at the moment.
This luxury student housing development going up at 573 West 23rd Street is the tallest on the list, topping out at 22 stories — four for parking, 18 occupied, holding about 700 units. The project’s latest renderings have it looking something like a pint-sized version of London’s SIS building, as made famous by James Bond. It’s a striking design, so we’re hoping at least 50 percent of what we see in the rendering makes it to the real world. Excavation is now taking place at the site.
There isn’t much online yet about this project, except that it’s planned to have 17 floors, with four floors of parking and 15 of apartments, implying that at least two stories of parking will be located underground. The project’s designer is UDG, but renderings aren’t yet available. No demolition has currently taken place at the site, which is currently occupied by a low-rise apartment complex.
22 West Residential
An 18-story development by Capstone Collegiate Communities, 22 West will bring 153 dorm-style units to the area. It’s going up at 2200 Nueces Street, a stone’s throw from the 2100 Nueces project — they’re really cramming these towers in around here. The project may include mixed-use retail development on the ground floor.
Aspen West Campus
This 17-story project at 1909 Rio Grande Street features 166 units with 466 beds — in these kinds of developments, bed count matters more than room count, it seems. The tower will include four levels of underground parking, with an interesting geometric exterior design that breaks up some of the Legoland monotony. It’s expected to open in Fall of 2018, with excavation already underway.
The Nine at Austin
This 98-unit mid-rise project brings five floors of housing to 2518 Leon Street. The design in the rendering looks nice enough, but there isn’t much other info available at this time. Construction is barely underway at the site.
The Villas at San Gabriel
Another luxury mid-rise, the Villas will bring six stories of rental units and underground parking to 2414 San Gabriel Street. The project’s site indicates that the entire complex is already rented out for the Fall 2017 semester. Construction is coming along nicely at the site.
Autograph Collection / AC by Marriott Hotel
This 11-story, 347-room hotel project at 1901 San Antonio Street is a dual-branded development including both the Autograph Collection and AC by Marriott — the Autograph Collection is a more luxury-minded, full-service brand, while AC by Marriott appears to trend toward contemporary urban.
Though the two brands share a single building, they’ll have separate entrances and lobbies. The project is by White Lodging Services Corporation, which also plans to open a full-service, 615-room Marriott Hotel at Cesar Chavez and Trinity Streets.