Luxury Mid-Rise Condos Coming to Austin

A mid-rise luxury condominium project is headed downtown, two blocks from the Capitol.

Developers plan to break ground on the $50 million project, the Metropolitan, in late March. The site at 311 E. 11th St. is a parking lot behind the VFW office building at East 11th Street and San Jacinto Boulevard.

The developer, the Mote Group, plans a chic, eight-story building with units priced from the mid-$300,000s for about 900 square feet to more than $1 million for the larger penthouses, two-story glass lofts with private roof gardens. The project is expected to take two years to build, opening in 2009.

The Metropolitan is one of a dozen or so residential projects planned or under construction downtown, a building boom spurred by continued demand for urban living.

Most units will have balconies, and residents will have concierge and valet services, along with amenities that include a private club, the Fountainhead.

Parking will be on six levels underground, and the building will have street-level retail.

Thomas Mote, president of the Mote Group, said he expects buyers to include lobbyists and Capitol workers.

Austin-based Noack-Little Architects Inc. is designing the building. Clay Little, a principal with the firm, said the design aims to create an "architectural landmark suitable for the vibrant and exciting culture that is Austin."

Several other projects are under way nearby, including the Red River Flats, a luxury apartment project under construction on Red River Street, and Brazos Place, an office building that is being converted to condo- miniums.

Density "is necessary amid ever-increasing demand for a lifestyle in Austin's urban core," said Gregg Bell, chief financial officer of Pauly Presley Realty Corp., the marketing firm for the project. "There's only so much land."