Feature Photo: An aerial map of the proposed site with the rest of the Research Park tract in the background. Image: Google/VBX Graphic.
by Art Benavidez
Austin (Travis County) — An Austin real estate developer obtained a zoning change to expand permitted uses in the Research Park, with immediate plans for a 350-unit apartment complex.
Tuesday’s action by the Zoning and Platting Commission affects the entire business park by converting it from Limited Industrial to Limited Industrial-Planned Development Area, and it specifically addresses plans for Lot 11 within the complex in North Austin.
Karlin Real Estate purchased Research Park, a 179-acre, 1.11 million-square-foot office and industrial development in August 2019.
Research Park is located off U.S. Highway 183 and Research Boulevard. Lot 11 refers to a mostly undeveloped 31-acre site east of the 12500 block of Research Park Loop.
Karlin Real Estate requested the rezoning to allow for an office and multifamily development on a lot that was zoned LI. The working title of the project is Research Park Multifamily.
The specific area contains an electric switching station, a vacant parking structure and undeveloped land.
The following development regulations will apply to the project
- A minimum lot size is 5,750 square feet.
- The minimum lot width is 50 feet.
- There is no minimum interior side yard, rear yard, front yard, or street yard setbacks.
- The maximum height is 60 feet.
- The maximum floor-to-area ratio is 1:1
Richard Suttle Jr, with Armbrust & Brown, PLLC, submitted a letter to the commission stating that the real estate company intends to develop portions of the property with a mix of office and multifamily uses.
He called the proposed Research Park Multifamily project the first phase of the development.
“When Karlin is ready to move forward on the subsequent phases of development, a PDA amendment application will be submitted to the city to allow for the modified development regulations to apply for the remainder of the property.”
Suttle said that redeveloping the entire site was something that is being considered.
“We are doing a bigger park than would be required for a 350-unit (project),” he said. “There may come a time when we do more residential on the property.”
Suttle couldn’t provide a definitive timetable of when more of the park would be redeveloped saying it could be “six months from now” or “a year” and what was complicating matters were leases at the park.
A subsidiary of Flex, Ltd. the third largest global electronics manufacturing services company currently leases manufacturing space at the park.
Karlin Real Estate owns the property through the entity Karlin Research Park Development, LLC.
Austin-based civil engineers LandDev Consulting are on board the project.
VBX Project ID: 2021-67B0