KPF breaks ground on supertall skyscraper set to be Texas' tallest
American architecture studio Kohn Pedersen Fox has revealed images of Waterline, a supertall skyscraper to be built in Austin that will be the tallest structure in the state of Texas once completed.
Construction has begun on Waterline, which will be located along Waller Creek, a small waterway that feeds into the Red River in Austin.
Kohn Pedersen Fox (KPF) announced that the structure will be 1,022 feet tall (312 metres) and hold apartments, a hotel and office space.
With its 74 storeys, Waterline will unseat Houston's JPMorgan Chase Tower – measuring 1,002 feet tall (305 metres) – as the tallest building in the state of Texas, and will be the third supertall skyscraper to be built in the state.
Renderings show a staggering tower with glass facades and a variety of thin transoms that crisscross the face. With a sloped top, the skyscraper will have three distinct sections separated by columns that leave room for semi-open spaces.
"The facades of the building express this collection of functions as a collage of varied patterns," said KPF president James von Klemperer. "The project promises to become an icon for Texas' capital city, expressing its spirit of quirky innovation."
The first and lowest section of the building will be a pavilion that stretches along the length of the 3.3-acre site, which will hold 24,000 square feet (7,315 square metres) of publically accessible retail and restaurants.
Separated from the river by a preserved floodplain, much of the base level will be lifted 30 feet (9 metres) above the ground by structural pillars.
"Sculptural columns draw inspiration from sacred species of trees in Austin, while native stones and landscaping speak to the character of the creek across the site to Red River Street," said KPF design director Andrew Klare.
A canopy created between the columns and the envelope of the pavilion will hold entrances to the residential and office areas of the tower, while the landscaping from the park will be extended to create a more natural environment under the skyscraper.
Above the base, a tower, rotated from the base to face the river directly, will have two distinct vertical parts separated by similar columns that create more canopies in the higher parts of the tower.
The section directly above the base will hold 13 storeys, making up the 1 Hotel Austin. Above this section will be a rooftop pool.
Offices will be spread over the next 27 floors, while the top 33 floors that make up the final section of the building will be reserved for residences.
KPF said that the team is targeting LEED Gold certification on the project.
"Downtown Austin offers one of the most dynamic markets and skylines in the nation, and we're excited to help drive its ongoing transformation," said Seth Johnston senior vice president of Lincoln Property Company, who, along with Kairoi Residential, is the developer on the project.
Austin has seen an influx of development over the past few years, with a number of skyscrapers adding to the skyline. Another recent addition to the city's skyline is Rhode Partner's The Independent, a 58-storey residential skyscraper.
KPF has designed a number of other supertall skyscrapers in the United States including the 1,401-foot-tall (427 metres) One Vanderbilt in Manhattan.