Plans to develop a huge residential and commercial hub on the southeastern edge of Austin have taken another step toward.

With little discussion, the city's Zoning and Platting Commission on Aug. 16 unanimously approved a preliminary plan for the first phase of construction for the planned community on 1,400 acres near Pearce and Wolf lanes. That is in the unincorporated community of Del Valle, east of Circuit of The Americas race track and south of Tesla's new gigafactory.

Houston-based real estate developer Hines purchased the land earlier this year with the intention to create Mirador, a master-planned community that includes 2,500 single-family lots and 75 acres of commercial space.

The project also includes 50 acres of multifamily homes and townhomes, as well as on-site amenities including a 60-acre lake, more than 600 acres of greenbelt, trails and a swimming pool.

This is just one step in regulatory review, but Hines still hopes to begin construction later this year, with the first home sales beginning in 2023.

“The Austin housing market remains historically tight and with Mirador, Hines aims to meet a much-needed demand for housing,” Hines Managing Director Dustin Davidson said in an email. “We have assembled a team of best-in-class consultants and engineers to make Mirador a truly unique master-planned community with a people-centered approach to design that will be an icon for the Austin area for the years to come.”

Located within the Sun Chase municipal utility district at 16070 Pearce Lane, the first phase includes a small lot subdivision consisting of 138 lots on roughly 41 acres.

The small lot subdivision would also include sidewalks, with properties divided into parcels of about 6,500 square feet, according to documents submitted to the city.

"I am happy to approve," Jolene Kiolbassa, the Zoning and Platting Commission's vice chair, said during the meeting.

The project is located in a largely rural area that is prime for residential and retail development. Many expect urban Austin to continue to push eastward as the population swells. That can be seen in plans to expand roads, like FM 973.

"Although Austin has seen unprecedented growth in the last decade, the southeastern section of the metro area has been underserved from a housing perspective," Davidson said. "Mirador provides an opportunity to deliver new housing to residents where a combination of strong job growth, proximity to downtown and availability of transportation infrastructure all."

The commission's approval followed the recommendation of city staffers, who noted it represents the first phase of regulatory review. The first-phase plats were approved with conditions and developers have until Oct. 17 to submit updates to clear the remaining comments. The item will not need to return to the commission after the comments are cleared.

Hines could then submit construction plans, which will also have to go through review and approval.

This initial phase is just one part of the larger project, which is expected to cost about $500 million. Hine purchased the land from fellow development firm Qualico, which previously planned to include the area in its Sun Chase subdivision to the south.

Builders that have signed onto Mirador include Gehan Homes, Lennar Homes, David Weekley Homes, Highland Homes and MHI Homes.

Even though the housing market has stabilized some, more new homes are still needed to keep up with the high level of residential demand. Housing inventory reached 2.7 months in the Austin metro in July, according to the the Austin Board of Realtors, and the median sale price was $515,000.

Founded in 1957, Hines is a privately owned global real estate investment, development and management firm. It has a presence in 285 cities across 28 countries.

As of January, it had $90.3 billion of investment assets under management. The firm is currently working on 198 developments around the world. It has developed, redeveloped or purchased more than 1,530 properties, totaling more than 511 million square feet.

Within the Austin area, Hines is also developing Lakeside at Tessera, an 877-acre master-planned community in Lago Vista expected to contain 2,030 residences when completed.

It also owns and manages Southpark Commerce Center II, a four-building, 372,125-square-foot industrial park in Southeast Austin.


Source: Austin Business Journal

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