A large construction project is set to change the urban landscape of Austin. At 1,035 feet (315 meters), the Wilson Tower is expected to become the tallest building in the state. Designed by architecture firm HKS, it will be an 80-story building with 450 units, outdoor terraces and gardens. The work, a collaboration with Britt Design Group and Wilson Capital, will begin construction in the US summer of 2023.
“We didn’t set out to be the tallest. That was really just the result of doing the best design possible,” Brad Wilkins of HKS told CNN. “We’re going to see others of this height throughout the city. I won’t be surprised to hear about more.”
Nicknamed ‘Silicon Hills’, Austin has become a hub for technological activity and is a city that is becoming increasingly popular. HKS announced the design of Wilson Tower, while Britt Design Group would have the interiors and Nudge Design would do the landscaping work. It would be the tallest in the country outside of New York, according to Arch Daily.
Austin is a really energetic place. It’s amazing how much is happening and how much is going to continue to happen here.Brad Wilkins, HKS
Austin began to change with the rise of tech companies. Tesla’s factory was inaugurated, and other giants such as Google and Microsoft also chose the city. This is how it positioned itself as a common point for these companies of the same line of business, which recognize it as the ‘City of Business’.
Although the growth has generated jobs and a better quality of life, there are aspects that are not so positive. The city faced a real estate crisis, which led companies to plan new construction. As an imposing vertical structure, the Wilson Tower will be located in the heart of Austin, very close to the University of Texas. This area is key because it makes up the historic 6th Street entertainment district. It will encompass a total of half a city block, in place of the Avenue Lofts, a 1943 Art Deco building.
Every skyscraper rises almost with its own stamp in major urban centers, and this one is sure to grab the eyes of passersby. The Wilson Tower will have large open-air terraces and gardens, with unobstructed views and a restaurant on the first floor. Four of its floors will be devoted to amenities, with a swimming pool, a wellness fitness center and a movie theater. As an ingredient that could not be missing in a city where work is becoming the trigger for growth, there will also be co-working spaces.
In statements reported by Arch Daily, Taylor Wilson, a developer with Wilson Capital, said they believe it is important to add density to the area, intentionally designed along transit corridors to accommodate Austin’s unprecedented level of population growth.
At Wilson Tower, available apartments will range from studios to some four-bedroom units. The building itself will rise from the podium level and will be relatively flat, with glazing on the wider sides of the structure and a metal soldier wrapping around the narrow portions. The technique, known as brise soleil, will allow for shaded outdoor areas as an answer to the hot Texas summers.