High profile lakeside apartment project ramps up construction
The high-rise apartment community under construction near South Congress Avenue and Barton Springs Road has been rebranded as The Catherine.
The 19-story building under construction just to the south of the Hyatt Regency Austin is a partnership between the Hunt Cos. Inc. of El Paso and SLR Residential, an affiliate of StreetLights Residential of Dallas.
The Hunt Cos. in partnership with SLR Residential is building The Catherine on Barton Springs Road just west of Congress Avenue. The provided rendering alludes to the fact that the Hyatt Regency Austin will obscure some views of downtown Austin.
Courtesy of Rhode Partners
The project, which has been a long time in the works, is now at the fifth floor of construction, and the first phase will be delivered about a year from now, according to Jim Dobbie, senior vice president of development for Hunt’s southwest division.
The partnership acquired the site at 214 Barton Springs Road in December 2012 from Crescent Resources LLC, which had planned to build condominiums dubbed, “Aquaterra” since 2006. The recession stalled those plans and eventually Crescent Resources filed for Chapter 11 reorganization. After that process, the company decided to sell. Hunt and SLR Residential are equally involved and are joint general contractors, as well. The Catherine is their first partnership.
“We changed the name because we like to brand our own projects,” Dobbie said.
The flood of new luxury apartments to open in the downtown market during the next 18 months does not have the developer worried about oversupply.
“The market is receiving these projects very well. Austin is showing it’s a very strong town,” Dobbie said. “The general trend we’re seeing is that not only GenYers are interested but baby boomers are also looking for high quality apartments with the same kind of amenities.”
The Catherine will have five stories of parking, topped by a sixth floor of high end amenities, including a pool deck, fitness center and leasing office.
Dobbie said apartments likely will be priced around $2 per square foot, substantially less than the $3 per square foot being charged for some units at The Whitley, which is finished and largely leased.
The bulk of the units at The Catherine will be one-bedrooms. Two-bedrooms, studios and two-story penthouses also will be available.
The block surrounding The Catherine is a hub of activity. The Hyatt Regency Austin is building a parking garage and ballroom. Directly to the west, Alliance Residential is building more low-rise apartments.
Dobbie said all of the construction equipment and activity hasn’t hindered progress at The Catherine.
“We’ve all got a cooperative relationship,” Dobbie said.
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