Undeveloped Tract Transformed into a $35M Mixed-Use Project in East Austin

By Camelia Bulea, Associate Editor Richard deVarga, a local developer and architect, and Robert Summers, an Austin attorney and arts advocate, recently bought 25 acres of undeveloped land in East Austin and plan to convert it into a $35 million mixed-use project that will include 150 residences along with public, studio and retail space. It [...]

Richard deVarga, a local developer and architect, and Robert Summers, an Austin attorney and arts advocate, recently bought 25 acres of undeveloped land in East Austin and plan to convert it into a $35 million mixed-use project that will include 150 residences along with public, studio and retail space. It is slated to be built on the land adjacent to Govalle Park, according the Community Impact Newspaper.

Most of the residential units will be affordable, and developers have announced that they will target Austinites working in technology, music, film, gaming and other creative fields, reports the Statesman. Developers have recently filed an application for a special type of zoning for their project. If the zoning is approved and financing is obtained, the first phase could start in the summer of 2013. With a total of five phases, the entire complex will comprise of 300,000 square feet and 28 buildings.

Dubbed thinkEAST, the project has drawn support both from the community and affordable housing advocates, as well as from City Hall, according to a news release. KVUE reports that apartments will be similar in style to the Cobra Studios in East Austin, adding variety while keeping the area’s culture intact.

In other interesting news, a new residential project is set to break ground on Barton Springs Road. Local developers Kurt Simons and Ronnie Brooks plan to break ground on 225 upscale apartments, a project that will replace the former Mobile Manor RV Park, according to the Statesman. The loft-style units will have 10-foot, exposed-concrete ceilings and seven-foot windows, as well as a rooftop deck that will offer views of the lake, downtown skyline and Zilker Park.

The project is one of several high-end apartment developments under construction or proposed that will add more than 1,000 rental units to the area. The multifamily building boom in Austin—where rents and occupancies have reached record highs—is due to job and population growth, coupled with a relative scarcity of new supply coming online in the near-term.

Courtesy of thinkEAST

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