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  #1  
Old Posted Jan 8, 2015, 2:50 PM
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Cool Austin | Hotel Mirabeau | 357 FEET | 31 FLOORS | PROPOSED

We don't seem to have a thread for this project in the Austin sub-forum. So I'll start one. (Although there is a thread for it in the Highrise and Supertall Proposals sub-forum.) The site plan was filed this week for the latest rendition of this project. It comes in at 22-stories. Based on the filing it appears to be a 250 room hotel with no office or residential component. There is also a reference to the project as Waterloo Park Hotel with 260 rooms.

https://www.austintexas.gov/devrevie...erRSN=11258180
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Last edited by KevinFromTexas; Mar 28, 2016 at 5:37 PM. Reason: Added thread icon
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  #2  
Old Posted Jan 9, 2015, 5:16 AM
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Cool. I'm guessing it'll be around 240 feet tall then.
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  #3  
Old Posted Jan 9, 2015, 4:26 PM
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I'll shed a single tear for the Brick Oven but looking forward to a new place to dine before games.
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Old Posted Jan 9, 2015, 8:20 PM
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I thought the Brick Oven was directly in the CVC that is causing so much concern regarding the height of the intake facility for the Waterloo Creek tunnel diversion? How can they build a 200 plus footer there without impacting the CVC?
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Old Posted Jan 9, 2015, 8:36 PM
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Originally Posted by austlar1 View Post
I thought the Brick Oven was directly in the CVC that is causing so much concern regarding the height of the intake facility for the Waterloo Creek tunnel diversion?
It looks like the east side of Red River at 12th Street (which is where the project would be located) is not in a CVC.

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Old Posted Jan 10, 2015, 1:55 AM
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Originally Posted by LoneStarMike View Post
It looks like the east side of Red River at 12th Street (which is where the project would be located) is not in a CVC.

Which just goes to show exactly how silly and ridiculous the CVC caused delay in the completion of the intake facility really is. Any tall building built across Red River from the intake facility is going to block more view of the capitol than the actual proposed intake facility is likely to do. Stopping the CVC right at Red River was a decision that was probably the result of lobbying by Seton stakeholders concerned about possibly not being able to expand the hospital facilities much earlier in the game.
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  #7  
Old Posted Jan 10, 2015, 3:42 AM
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Originally Posted by austlar1 View Post
Which just goes to show exactly how silly and ridiculous the CVC caused delay in the completion of the intake facility really is. Any tall building built across Red River from the intake facility is going to block more view of the capitol than the actual proposed intake facility is likely to do. Stopping the CVC right at Red River was a decision that was probably the result of lobbying by Seton stakeholders concerned about possibly not being able to expand the hospital facilities much earlier in the game.
Amen to all that, Brother Austlar1. Preach! The arbitrary nature of bureaucratic rules irrationally distorts everything in the wake of their implementation and enforcement. I don't know of any way to get around this, it just seems to be a built-in feature of large-scale decision making processes. But it's extra irksome when the right hand is fighting the left, as is the case with the intake. Whats the cliche I'm looking for, cutting down the forest to save the trees? Robbing Peter to pay Paul? I just saved 15 percent on my car insurance?
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Old Posted Jan 10, 2015, 5:00 PM
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Originally Posted by austlar1 View Post
I thought the Brick Oven was directly in the CVC that is causing so much concern regarding the height of the intake facility for the Waterloo Creek tunnel diversion? How can they build a 200 plus footer there without impacting the CVC?
The intake facility is in Waterloo Park. Capital views from Waterloo Park are protected. As you can see in the map above, this development will be east of Waterloo Park and not in a CVC.
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  #9  
Old Posted Jan 10, 2015, 8:18 PM
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Originally Posted by paul78701 View Post
The intake facility is in Waterloo Park. Capital views from Waterloo Park are protected. As you can see in the map above, this development will be east of Waterloo Park and not in a CVC.
Yes, that has been addressed in the two or three previous posts. The point is that the CVC arbitrarily ends at Red River in the general vicinity of the Seton Hospital complex and the site of the proposed Waterloo Tower project. This was probably the result of lobbying by Seton to protect their expansion options at the time the CVCs were created. The CVC extends beyond Red River to the south and also in places to the north of the site in question. The CVC is supposed to protect long range views of the capitol from IH35 and elsewhere as well as inside Waterloo Park. Actually inside Waterloo Park, the stalled out intake facility would only block a snippet of the capitol view that would be available to anyone walking a few yards in any direction away from the front of the intake facility. It is absurd to block completion of the intake facility and allow a 220 foot plus structure to be built directly across the street.
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Old Posted Jan 10, 2015, 11:25 PM
paul78701 paul78701 is offline
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Originally Posted by austlar1 View Post
Yes, that has been addressed in the two or three previous posts. The point is that the CVC arbitrarily ends at Red River in the general vicinity of the Seton Hospital complex and the site of the proposed Waterloo Tower project. This was probably the result of lobbying by Seton to protect their expansion options at the time the CVCs were created. The CVC extends beyond Red River to the south and also in places to the north of the site in question. The CVC is supposed to protect long range views of the capitol from IH35 and elsewhere as well as inside Waterloo Park. Actually inside Waterloo Park, the stalled out intake facility would only block a snippet of the capitol view that would be available to anyone walking a few yards in any direction away from the front of the intake facility. It is absurd to block completion of the intake facility and allow a 220 foot plus structure to be built directly across the street.
I'm guessing the Seton complex was there and already blocking views from IH35 when the CVCs were created. Subsequently, they just didn't bother to put that land in a CVC. Again, I'm just guessing.

Yes. The whole intake facility fiasco was/is ridiculous.
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  #11  
Old Posted Jan 10, 2015, 11:44 PM
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I think the thing that annoys me the most about the intake facility is the city should've immediately requested a variance from the State legislature as soon as the infraction was discovered, and yet instead of that they decided to immediately begin a redesign.
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  #12  
Old Posted Jan 11, 2015, 12:41 AM
MichaelB MichaelB is offline
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.....and..... sorry to pile on.
But what bothers me most is "spirit of the law vs letter....."
The observation deck on the top of the intake would have given BETTER views of the Capitol than the small protion it would have blocked from ground level between the intake and Red River.
I am, in general, a supporter of the idea of the CVC.... but this was rediculous and a huge no-brainer.
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  #13  
Old Posted Jan 11, 2015, 4:40 PM
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Point of Clarification about Texas Government

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Originally Posted by Digatisdi View Post
I think the thing that annoys me the most about the intake facility is the city should've immediately requested a variance from the State legislature as soon as the infraction was discovered, and yet instead of that they decided to immediately begin a redesign.
This statement has been stated a few times, and this issue really needs to be clarified.

From what we have previously discussed, the CVCs can only be altered by act of the Texas Legislature. If I recall correctly, this issue was discovered around May 2014. For those who do not know, the Texas legislature meets every two years, with the newest session starting on Jan. 13, 2015 (meaning it hasn't been in session since the Waller Creek Inlet issue was discovered). Several months after the start of session, after a bill makes it though committee and through debate in both chambers, would be the absolute earliest that a "variance" from the city could be possibly approved. That is with no opposition (which most certainly would come up from many different sources).

It really is a tough situation, and one that is uniquely face by Austin being the State Capitol. There is much debate on the role of the Legislature in Austin affair, but what is law is what is law at this time. The city acted on the only real option it had, and if you have issue with that, please get involved and try and get legislation passed this session.

More info here about the last time amendments to the CVC legislation were attempted: https://www.preservationaustin.org/a...iew-corridors/
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  #14  
Old Posted Jan 11, 2015, 9:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Myomi View Post
This statement has been stated a few times, and this issue really needs to be clarified.

From what we have previously discussed, the CVCs can only be altered by act of the Texas Legislature. If I recall correctly, this issue was discovered around May 2014. For those who do not know, the Texas legislature meets every two years, with the newest session starting on Jan. 13, 2015 (meaning it hasn't been in session since the Waller Creek Inlet issue was discovered). Several months after the start of session, after a bill makes it though committee and through debate in both chambers, would be the absolute earliest that a "variance" from the city could be possibly approved. That is with no opposition (which most certainly would come up from many different sources).

It really is a tough situation, and one that is uniquely face by Austin being the State Capitol. There is much debate on the role of the Legislature in Austin affair, but what is law is what is law at this time. The city acted on the only real option it had, and if you have issue with that, please get involved and try and get legislation passed this session.

More info here about the last time amendments to the CVC legislation were attempted: https://www.preservationaustin.org/a...iew-corridors/
This is only partially true. Some CVCs are state law, some are city code. It just depends on which CVC you're talking about.

And it wasn't "discovered in 2014"... Knowledgeable observers have known this all along.
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Old Posted Apr 29, 2015, 4:33 AM
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Just FWIW, the CVC does not impact this site at all:

https://www.google.com/maps/d/edit?m...s.kFyc1SOGTRGA
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  #16  
Old Posted Jan 10, 2016, 12:59 AM
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I've been trying to dig up info on some of the more suspect projects like this one. The site plan application for this one was endanger of expiring like it did for 99 Trinity. But this one did have an update as recently as 12/29/15 which indicates they're at least trying to go forward.

https://www.austintexas.gov/devrevie...erRSN=11258180
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Old Posted Feb 29, 2016, 9:19 PM
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A new site plan was filed today. The height has been bumped up to 24-stories and its being described as "a five star" hotel. There are no attachments with building details yet.

https://www.austintexas.gov/devrevie...erRSN=11491822
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  #18  
Old Posted Feb 29, 2016, 9:22 PM
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And someone was saying development was likely to slow down? Let me let everyone in on a little not-so-secret: the United States has the best economy of all post-industrial western nations, and Austin has the strongest economy in that country of all major cities. I.E. Austin is one of the hottest markets in the entire world right now, so of course we're still going strong.
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Old Posted Mar 1, 2016, 1:33 AM
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And someone was saying development was likely to slow down? Let me let everyone in on a little not-so-secret: the United States has the best economy of all post-industrial western nations, and Austin has the strongest economy in that country of all major cities. I.E. Austin is one of the hottest markets in the entire world right now, so of course we're still going strong.
It's true we are in a great position economically but there are a couple of things to keep in mind.

First, technically this is not a new project per-se. The developer has been working behind the scenes as evident by the latest news is about it being a 5 star hotel. I would expect they are close to securing capital, if it's already not secured and I'm guessing the brand has committed.

Secondly, as far as economic stability is concerned, we don't necessarily have to be affected by an external economic downturn. I'd be more concerned about internal problems like housing stock, traffic, inadequate mass transit and a growing low wage workforce which can't afford to live in the city. If we don't do something soon about trying to alleviate those issues, we'll create our own economic downturn. This is a problem in which local economists have sounded the alarm to city and regional leaders and the warning has gotten louder.

Lastly, we can't disregard global economics completely. As Austin continues to morph into a global city, so too will our economy become more intertwined with the world economy. Even if we weather a downturn relatively (though not completely) unscathed, doesn't mean that investment capital will be flowing. A perfect example is the most recent economic downturn. Austin was able to hold its own pretty well but for a couple of years we didn't see any major construction in DT. The projects planned that were unable to get built before the Great Recession were put on hold like the Van Zandt.

I'm not saying we should freak out or anything because it will take a lot to slow this city's momentum even with the local problems, but at the same time, If capital investors become cautious they won't be putting money into any projects regardless of how well a specific city or area is doing.
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  #20  
Old Posted Mar 1, 2016, 3:30 AM
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...as far as economic stability is concerned, we don't necessarily have to be affected by an external economic downturn. I'd be more concerned about internal problems like housing stock, traffic, inadequate mass transit and a growing low wage workforce which can't afford to live in the city. If we don't do something soon about trying to alleviate those issues, we'll create our own economic downturn.
San Francisco is a pretty good case study of the kind of scenario you're portraying, and if they're any kind of an indicator of what's in store for us then we're going to keep on booming while our problems keep on probleming. SF has been "unaffordable" for many decades, but where there's a need and a will, there's a way. Hopefully our state legislature won't follow the current trend of red states banning minimum wage laws at the local level (isn't it amazing how Republicans are all for local control, until that control turns against them?) In other words, I bet we'll [partially] deal with the affordability crunch by raising minimum wage.

But here's the real deal as far as how these crises work themselves out --- if it becomes impossible to find employees willing to work for $8/hour because it's too expensive to live in Austin, then employers will pay more. So the de facto minimum wage is higher already in expensive cities. I'm not shrugging off the problem of affordability, I'm only suggesting that it's not going to slow down the local economy. There are so many benefits for businesses to locate in a city like Austin, we can't come up with enough problems to keep them away.
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