Austin’s conducive business environment has attracted large tech and creative companies over the years, including Facebook, Amazon, and WeWork, who are moving their headquarters or opening offices in the market. This has led to a constant demand for modern and environmentally friendly buildings to house the growing number of employees.
Data from the US Green Building Council shows that out of 139 projects that got certifications in texas last year, 18 are located in Austin, totaling just over 4 million square feet. The following list highlights the top-rated office buildings in the state capital, with all entrances receiving at least LEED Gold certification. Office buildings that were part of mixed-use megaprojects taking shape in the northern parts and southwest of the metro were evident.
|Rank||name of the project||Certification date||street name||Certification scoring system||Certification level||Gross area (pc)|
|1||816 Congress||04/10/2020||816, avenue du Congrès.||LEED v4.1 O + M||Platinum||470,389|
|2||An American center||01/21/2020||600, avenue du Congrès.||LEED v4 O + M||Gold||523 106|
|3||300 W. Sixth Street||1/12/2020||300 W. Sixth Street||LEED v4 O + M||Gold||462,037|
|4||Domain 12||02/10/2020||Alterra Promenade -12||LEED-CS v2009||Gold||325,307|
|5||Domain 10||2/12/2020||Alterra Promenade -10||LEED-CS v2009||Gold||293,229|
|6||Terrace VI||05/19/2020||2901 Via Fortuna||LEED v4.1 O + M: EB||Gold||202 728|
|7||Terrace VII||6/12/2020||2801 Via Fortuna||LEED v4.1 O + M: EB||Gold||200,549|
|8||Domain 3||07/06/2020||11501 Domain reader||LEED v4.1 O + M: EB||Gold||200 203|
|9||Domain 4||07/06/2020||11500 Alterra Drive||LEED v4.1 O + M: EB||Gold||157,245|
|ten||Terrace I||05/19/2020||2600 Via Fortuna||LEED v4.1 O + M: EB||Gold||122,423|
Topping the list is the 20-story Cousins Tower in downtown Austin. The 470,389 square foot asset is the only one to receive the highest level of certification – LEED Platinum – in the subway last year and is one of only three to achieve this status in Texas. The property has already received LEED Gold certification in 2018 and 2019 and is Energy Star certified.
The building was completed in 1982 and underwent cosmetic renovations in 1994 and 2008, according to data from CommercialEdge. Additionally, a $ 3 million outdoor patio and lounge was added to the 15th floor in 2012. The tenant list includes the Austin Bar Association, TPG, and Richards Rodriguez & Skeith.
2. An American center
The 32-story tower is the largest property on the list, totaling 523,106 square feet. An American center received LEED Gold certification in early 2020. The award is actually a recertification; the asset reached Gold in 2017 and 2019, the first when the building underwent cosmetic renovations totaling $ 18 million, including $ 8.2 million for lobby, plaza and common areas.
Located at 600 Congress Ave., a short walk from downtown, the California State Teachers’ Retirement System building is within walking distance of some of Austin’s best shopping and dining. Common areas include bicycle storage, an on-site ATM, fitness center and 13 terraces and balconies. Tenants include corporations, tech and creative companies such as WeWork, Tableau Software, and Box.
3.300 W. Sixth Street.
The second CalSTRS building on the list is the 462,037 square foot tower located at 300 W. Sixth St. In early December, the asset received LEED Gold recertification, marking the fourth certification since 2017. The property went first obtained LEED Silver certification in 2009 for the operation and maintenance of existing buildings. In addition, the asset has been rated Energy Star since 2013.
Located just one block from the One American Center, the building is home to several tech and financial tenants. Facebook has been renting space in the tower since 2010 and now occupies 120,000 square feet.
4. & 5. Domain 10 & Domain 12
Both buildings are part of the massive 1.9 million square foot estate development approximately 12 miles north of downtown Austin. Cousins delivered the buildings in 2020, with the USGBC awarding both properties LEED Gold certifications. The mixed-use campus also includes retail spaces, restaurants, apartments, hotels and entertainment spaces.
Amazon is the only tenant Estate 10 – the 293,229 square foot building houses employees from several departments including software and hardware engineering, research science and cloud computing. The 15-story asset has a fitness center and on-site bicycle storage. Estate 12 comprises 325,307 square feet over 17 floors and features a podium-style design. Facebook takes up all the space, and the tech giant is also renting three floors at Domain 8.
6. & 7. Terrace VI & Terrace VII
The Terrace is a planned 109-acre development near Mopac and Loop 360, adjacent to the Barton Creek Greenbelt and less than 6 miles southwest of downtown Austin. Cousins’ four-building campus is home to several companies such as VLK Architects, Broadcom Corp. and Serve Capital Partners.
The 202,728 square foot Terrace VI at 2901 Via Fortuna and the 200,549 square foot Terrace VII at 2801 Via Fortuna received LEED Gold recognition in 2020. Completed in 2002, the two five-story buildings feature cooling towers with two SWUD units; other common amenities include walking trails and outdoor exercise stations.
8 & 9. Domain 3 & Domain 4
The two buildings are the third and fourth entries on the list, part of the massive development of the estate. The 200,203 square foot Estate 3 and the 157,245 square foot Estate 4 received LEED Gold certifications. Adjacent buildings were completed in 2001, the former being leased to TPx Communications, while the latter houses Accruent, Eso and Compeat, according to data from CommercialEdge.
10. Terrace I
The last entry on the list is the 122,423 square foot building located at 2600 Via Fortuna — Terrace I received LEED Gold certification in mid-2020. The five-story property is home to several tenants, including the head office of AIC Ventures, as well as the local offices of Philadelphia Insurance Cos., Kirkus Media and Cornerstone Home Lending.