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AUSTIN-Plans for the 23-acre East Avenue Development have been firmed up, with construction on a 210-room Hyatt-brand hotel and 600,000 sf of office space scheduled to begin in late 2008. It is expected to take three years to build out the $750-million, 2.75-million-sf, mixed-use project.

Austin is the fourth city in the world and first in the Southwest for the luxury flag, Hyatt Andaz. Andy Sarwal, East Avenue Investment Group LP’s lead developer, says a luxury hotel was always in the cards for the development site at the intersection of Interstate 35 and 32nd Street. The developer and Hyatt are joint venturing on the hotel. The architect and general contractor have yet to be selected.

“We were out there and talking to a few different groups,” Sarwal says. “We were fortunate we were able to get something done with these guys because it’ll fit in well with the culture.” He says the appeal of the Andaz brand from a development point of view is that each hotel is unique. “These hotels mimic their surroundings,” he says. “They use regional materials to build and to fit in. It’s environmentally friendly. All these things bode well for Austin.”

When the hotel breaks ground, Sarwal says construction will begin on 600,000 sf of office space too. The developer then plans to start work on 150 condominiums, 1,450 rental units and 325,000 sf of retail space. Sarwal tells GlobeSt.com that his company will partner with different companies to develop each component.

East Avenue Development will be built on the site of Concordia College, which will be moving to 2311 W. Rundberg Lane in Northwest Austin. “They’re planning to be out by the middle of next year,” Sarwal says. “The buildings there will be totally demolished.” In the interim, the developers have access to parts of the campus so work can begin on utilities and other infrastructure.

Aquila Commercial LLC in Austin is marketing the project’s office space. Sarwal says leasing and sales of residential units also will be outsourced.

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