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  #41  
Old Posted Aug 25, 2012, 7:40 PM
MichaelB MichaelB is offline
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Originally Posted by SecretAgentMan View Post
With all due respect, MB, I think your property value concerns are a little over blown. Property values are based primarily on comps, not adjacent properties. I am surrounded by low-rent student housing on all sides, but it hasn't affected my appraisals at all. If your immediate surroundings don't look very good, it might affect time of sale in a slow market, but will have little to no affect on a desirable location in a hot market. Well maintained, new student housing, should not have any impact at all.
I Disagree. Conversations I have had with relators, etc seem to support our concerns. Especially the propertys that directly faced the develplment. They constiute the comps. WHen those units prices go down in our own building... now my comps have gone down.
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  #42  
Old Posted Aug 25, 2012, 8:05 PM
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LoneStarMike LoneStarMike is offline
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Yes, it is a closer to aforable place to live downtown.
I think for a building that's nearly 50 years old, Cambridge Tower has held up well, and the exterior is pretty much the same as when it opened in 1965.

At any rate, I found this blog entry about Cambridge Tower to be pretty interesting. All kinds of things I never knew about the building

Cambridge Tower: Austin's Landmark of Luxury

I never knew there were restaurants there at one time, as well as room service for what was originally built as apartments. (Wish my complex had room service.)

I never knew that the building was originally going to be mixed use, and I never knew that the current design was radically different from the original building plans.

I also never knew that it was designed by the same architect who designed the First National Bank Buiulding in Dallas.
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  #43  
Old Posted Aug 25, 2012, 9:14 PM
MichaelB MichaelB is offline
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Originally Posted by LoneStarMike View Post
I think for a building that's nearly 50 years old, Cambridge Tower has held up well, and the exterior is pretty much the same as when it opened in 1965.

At any rate, I found this blog entry about Cambridge Tower to be pretty interesting. All kinds of things I never knew about the building

Cambridge Tower: Austin's Landmark of Luxury

I never knew there were restaurants there at one time, as well as room service for what was originally built as apartments. (Wish my complex had room service.)

I never knew that the building was originally going to be mixed use, and I never knew that the current design was radically different from the original building plans.

I also never knew that it was designed by the same architect who designed the First National Bank Buiulding in Dallas.
There were and stiil are many "storied" residents here. There is also a growing new corp of residents who love the builidng for what it is, The only midcentury style highrise in Austin.

The ground floor is still all buisnesses. There;s have been current effrots to get a coffe shop or other cafe on the ground floor again.

As to the question earlier about Cambridge buying the lot. The building had the opportunity more than ten years ago to do so before prices started rising. Short sightedness at the time on the part of the board seemed to have prevented that. The price is now prohibitive. Any thought of doing so has been compromised by the $ going into the building to upgrade systems all steming from the fire last year.

All in all, it is a very well built building and a healthy reserve. Services are good. Location is great. And, like I have said, relative to downtown it is a more afordable location than most.
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  #44  
Old Posted Aug 25, 2012, 10:57 PM
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KevinFromTexas KevinFromTexas is offline
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I've always liked Cambridge Tower. Austin wouldn't be able to show any maturity in urban highrise living if it weren't for buildings like Cambridge. It's just awesome to think that we had any residential highrises in downtown almost 50 years ago.

I would LOVE to see the views from the roof. Isn't there a rooftop patio or something?
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  #45  
Old Posted Aug 26, 2012, 8:23 PM
MichaelB MichaelB is offline
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Originally Posted by KevinFromTexas View Post
I've always liked Cambridge Tower. Austin wouldn't be able to show any maturity in urban highrise living if it weren't for buildings like Cambridge. It's just awesome to think that we had any residential highrises in downtown almost 50 years ago.

I would LOVE to see the views from the roof. Isn't there a rooftop patio or something?
There is. We can include it on a downtown meet up sometime if you would like.
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  #46  
Old Posted Aug 26, 2012, 8:56 PM
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I'd love that. When it cools off a bit we should get another forum meet planned.
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  #47  
Old Posted Aug 27, 2012, 12:13 AM
MichaelB MichaelB is offline
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I'd love that. When it cools off a bit we should get another forum meet planned.
I'm game
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  #48  
Old Posted Sep 7, 2012, 2:02 AM
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My sources inform me that the planetarium project's proposal for ground lease has been approved by the State and it is moving forward.
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  #49  
Old Posted Sep 8, 2012, 4:48 PM
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My sources inform me that the planetarium project's proposal for ground lease has been approved by the State and it is moving forward.
Such Great news!
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  #50  
Old Posted Sep 9, 2012, 12:48 AM
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This things a game changer. If it comes off anywhere near what they've shown then we will have something world class. And that in an underutilized part of central Austin.
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  #51  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2012, 1:06 AM
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http://www.statesman.com/news/busine...ions-ca/nS8ZC/
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Posted: 7:08 p.m. Friday, Nov. 16, 2012
Sunset staff critical of Facilities Commission’s Capitol complex plans
Report calls for more collaboration, transparency


By Laylan Copelin
American-Statesman Staff

The Texas Facilities Commission has gotten ahead of itself with plans for developing the Capitol complex and other state properties across Austin with the private sector’s help, according to a report from the staff of the Sunset Advisory Commission of Texas.

The Facilities Commission “has put the cart before the horse, stepping into these efforts without adequate guidance, planning and resources needed to ensure protection of the State’s best interests,” the staff wrote in a report released Friday. “Now more than ever, effective planning and collaboration with key agencies that include the state’s highest leadership is critical to ensuring (the Facilities Commission) proceeds with a unified vision for any future development of the Capitol Complex.”

The Facilities Commission says it has kept state and local officials, as well as the public, apprised of its plans, including meetings with 100 lawmakers and presentations at seven public events attended by more than 1,000 people.
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  #52  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2013, 9:33 PM
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http://www.statesman.com/news/busine...ol-comp/nWRdg/
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Posted: 7:50 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 17, 2013
CONTINUING COVERAGE: STATE PROPERTY
Legislators addressing development in Capitol complex


By Laylan Copelin
American-Statesman Staff

Concerns about plans to build out the Capitol complex have some lawmakers reconsidering the role of public-private partnerships, including changes in state law that could afford Austin neighborhoods some protection from commercial development on state lands.

Public-private partnerships — commonly called P3s — aren’t going away, but powerful legislators are telling Terry Keel, executive director of the Texas Facilities Commission, that the controversial financing option might not be right for the heart of the Capitol complex.

Also, state Sen. Kirk Watson, D-Austin, has filed legislation that would require the state, in most instances, to follow local land use and zoning rules when it develops state lands in neighborhoods outside the Capitol complex.
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  #53  
Old Posted Feb 19, 2013, 6:30 AM
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This guy is clueless. I've been going back and forth past downtown the last few days and was looking at the Capitol, the views and the site of the planetarium residential tower. It would have been well north of the Capitol and wouldn't have blocked the view of it AT ALL from I-35. In fact, it would have been halfway between the Capitol and where the "skyline" starts of West Campus and the UT Campus. I really think some of the people commenting on this have no clue what they're talking about including exactly where the building will be and how it will effect the view of the Capitol dome.

http://www.statesman.com/news/busine...anned-i/nWSCB/
Quote:
Updated: 7:41 p.m. Monday, Feb. 18, 2013 | Posted: 7:41 p.m. Monday, Feb. 18, 2013
Senator wants public-private partnerships banned in Capitol complex

By Laylan Copelin

Sen. John Whitmire, Texas’ longest-serving state senator, said Monday he plans to file legislation barring public-private partnerships in the Capitol complex and the selling off of any of the historic grounds.

“I’m very emphatic that we don’t commercialize and privatize any part of the Capitol complex,” said Whitmire, D-Houston. “I just think it’s non-negotiable to turn a foot of soil or office space into pizza businesses, barber shops, or high-rise, expensive condominiums.”

One project that was suggested was a 47-story tower for a planetarium, offices, condos and an underground parking garage. It would have been built at Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and North Congress Avenue at the planned north gateway to the Capitol and three new state office buildings.

“I’m really shocked that Austin public officials and citizens who were aware of the proposals did not come up in arms,” Whitmire said.
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  #54  
Old Posted Feb 19, 2013, 6:46 PM
MichaelB MichaelB is offline
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Originally Posted by KevinFromTexas View Post
This guy is clueless. I've been going back and forth past downtown the last few days and was looking at the Capitol, the views and the site of the planetarium residential tower. It would have been well north of the Capitol and wouldn't have blocked the view of it AT ALL from I-35. In fact, it would have been halfway between the Capitol and where the "skyline" starts of West Campus and the UT Campus. I really think some of the people commenting on this have no clue what they're talking about including exactly where the building will be and how it will effect the view of the Capitol dome.

http://www.statesman.com/news/busine...anned-i/nWSCB/
i kinda read all this as one big "cover your ass" BS. Sounds like Keel ( who lives in Cambridge) jumped the gun on pushing the development. But all of the "Other Parties"...ie, committees and Legislators who were not involved got pissed off 'cause they weren't incontrol. Left Hand meet Right hand!

It's interestinf that the two folks who want to see development are both from Austin ( one Dem, one Repub).... most of the other parties are not. I am finding it very interesting that this does not seem like a "party/political" fight.... at least at this point......More of a regional and or generational one.

Last edited by MichaelB; Feb 19, 2013 at 9:02 PM.
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  #55  
Old Posted Feb 19, 2013, 6:49 PM
MightyYoda MightyYoda is offline
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I lean Democrat, but man does every party have their black sheep. At the end of the day, I can respect any politician's view point if they actually back it up with factual data. I haven't heard Whitmire say anything, but opinions backed up by nothing at all or false information.
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  #56  
Old Posted Feb 19, 2013, 6:49 PM
Komeht Komeht is offline
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Originally Posted by KevinFromTexas View Post
This guy is clueless. I've been going back and forth past downtown the last few days and was looking at the Capitol, the views and the site of the planetarium residential tower. It would have been well north of the Capitol and wouldn't have blocked the view of it AT ALL from I-35. In fact, it would have been halfway between the Capitol and where the "skyline" starts of West Campus and the UT Campus. I really think some of the people commenting on this have no clue what they're talking about including exactly where the building will be and how it will effect the view of the Capitol dome.

http://www.statesman.com/news/busine...anned-i/nWSCB/
It's really horrendous that people with no stake in the city of Austin get to have say over such a dramatically important part of the city. This is one of the most frustrating developments I've seen in the last 3 or 4 decades and completely disheartening. It's bad enough when true stakeholders disagree and get in the way of progress. But at least then, it's people w/n the community with legitimate skin in the game.

Has Kirk Watson had anything to say about this BTW?
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  #57  
Old Posted Feb 19, 2013, 8:28 PM
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Kirk Watson was on the record within the last few weeks saying development here was in the best interest of Austin and that state lawmakers have no business stopping development here.
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  #58  
Old Posted Feb 19, 2013, 9:06 PM
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One or both of those two articles talks about Watson's position on it. I'm not sure this is really a discussion politicians should be having. Why bother having the facilities commission if it has no authority?
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  #59  
Old Posted Feb 19, 2013, 9:21 PM
Komeht Komeht is offline
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http://www.bizjournals.com/austin/bl...WPfukg0470a8fa

“I just think it’s non-negotiable to turn a foot of soil or office space into pizza businesses, barber shops, or high-rise, expensive condominiums," Whitmire told the Statesman.

Heaven forbid the state should turn a surface parking lot or structured parking garage into something shops that provide goods and services. We all know that precious soil is being put to the highest and best use in asphalt, parking garages and single use office buildings utterly vacant after 6pm.
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  #60  
Old Posted Feb 19, 2013, 9:23 PM
Komeht Komeht is offline
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One or both of those two articles talks about Watson's position on it. I'm not sure this is really a discussion politicians should be having. Why bother having the facilities commission if it has no authority?
I agree I'd want the politicians out of it - buy Senator Whitmire is sticking his nose right in the middle of it, and I'd sure like to have someone representing Austin having a say in this tussle.

Last edited by Komeht; Feb 20, 2013 at 7:23 AM.
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