AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin is a growing city with a skyline that seems to generate a new towering addition every year. Here’s a list of some notable towers, skyscrapers and office buildings in downtown Austin, including some that are in the works.
For fun, you can test your knowledge on being able to name some of these buildings using this KXAN quiz.
The Independent: 685 feet
As of August 2022, this tower on West Avenue takes the title of tallest tower in downtown. It has 58 stories. At the time of its construction, it was also described as the tallest residential building west of the Mississippi River.
The building is commonly known as the “Tetris Building” or the “Jenga Tower” because of its offset, tiered design.
“Inspired by Austin’s bold and innovative spirit, the movement between The Independent’s tiers is an outward reflection of the vibrant lifestyle within the building and surrounding community,” the high-rise’s website reads.
Final touches were put on the building in August 2019. At the time, prices for residences in the tower ranged from the mid-$400,000s up to $5 million.
The Austonian: 683 feet
The Austonian along Congress Avenue calls itself “first luxury high-rise in Austin” with 56 floors. Construction began in 2007 and was completed by 2010.
“The vision for The Austonian was to create an exclusive downtown neighborhood – a densely and thoughtfully designed urban oasis, where residents could live both within and above the energetic pulse of the city, in close proximity to everything downtown Austin has to offer,” the building’s website reads.
In April 2022, Austin Business Journal reported on a deal to buy three parcels around the condominium tower for $95 million. The deal would encompass 53,920 square feet on two sides of the building.
KXAN even has a webcam on top of the Austonian.
Block 185: 590 feet
This sail-shaped building along West Cesar Chavez Street is polarizing. You either love the design or don’t. Crews broke ground on the project in February 2019. In June 2019, Google opened up about leasing the space, saying it hopes to move in employees by 2023.
Austin Business Journal reported in July 2021 the tower had 35 stories and was 590 feet tall.
Frost Bank Tower: 515 feet
One of Austin’s most recognizable buildings is the 33-story Frost Bank Tower on Congress Avenue. According to its website, the skyscraper and its crown-like top were designed by Duda|Paine Architects. It was built in 2003 and holds space for different businesses.
Colorado Tower: 397 feet
The sleek, 29-floor Colorado Tower at 303 Colorado St. offers office space downtown. It’s owned by Cousins Properties, which owns properties in Dallas, Nashville, Atlanta and Charlotte, to name a few.
Austin Business Journal reported in August 2022 Cousins had plans for another office tower in The Domain in north Austin.
One Eleven Congress: 397 feet
The building is also home to Fareground, a marketplace that features different eateries.
Scarbrough Building: 110 feet
You can’t mention today’s tall towers in Austin without paying tribute to the first.
The Scarbrough Building, what’s considered to be downtown’s first skyscraper, was built in 1910 and renovated in 1985, according to its listing with ECR. It has eight stories, according to Guide to Austin Architecture. For a short time, the building off Congress Avenue was considered tallest private building in Texas when it was first built.
Sixth and Guadalupe: 875 feet projected
What will surpass The Independent as the city’s tallest tower once completed, Sixth and Guadalupe is a mixed-use skyscraper set to offer residences, ground-floor retail and office space. It will have 66 floors when it’s done, according to Lincoln Property Company.
Austin Business Journal reported in January 2022 Facebook’s parent company, Meta, leased the entire commercial half of the building and wants to hire 400 more people in the city.
Waterline tower: 1,022 feet projected
While Sixth and Guadalupe is next in line to be the tallest in Austin, it won’t hold that title for long. There are plans for a tower near the intersection of Red River Street and Cesar Chavez Street.
Depending on its height when completed, the project has a shot in surpassing even the tallest building in Texas — the JP Morgan Chase Tower, which tops out at just over 1,000 feet.
James Rambin with the Austin Towers blog reported in March 2022 developers got their permit approved by the City of Austin.
Austin Business Journal reported in September 2022 the tower will be called “Waterline,” and it is expected to have 74 floors.
The Modern: 55 stories projected
Construction on this 55-story residential tower began in April 2022 at the site formerly known as 9092 Rainey Street. The building will feature 300 market-rate units as well as 20 affordable units.
The building is being developed on land that used to house beloved bars Container Bar and Bungalow. However, Nelsen Partners Architects said the owner of Container Bar and a couple other Rainey Street bars will run an entertainment space in the basement of the building.
44 East Ave: 50 floors
A listing on Intracorp Homes shows construction is nearly done on this tower on the edge of Rainey Street with the interiors being finished up. The building is also already completely sold out of homes. 44 East Ave was offering one to four bedroom homes.
The tower topped out in September 2021 at 50 floors, according to Intracorp.
The Travis: 50 stories projected
According to a listing with Genesis Real Estate Group, The Travis at 80 Red River St. is set to have 50 stories, which is close to the number of stories at The Austonian and The Independent.
When completed, it’s expected to have over 400 units.
80 Rainey: 49 stories projected
Developers are continuing to look toward Rainey Street to build new residential towers. A listing about the intended 49-story project on the LV Collective website, or Lincoln Ventures, said this tower is expected to house over 600 units.
The building is slated to be up and running by 2025.