First look: Cielo to plant 46-story office tower, Perennial, in downtown Austin

Another tower will sprout in downtown Austin later this year.

Austin-based Cielo Property Group plans to break ground this summer on a 46-story, 750,000-square-foot office tower, called “Perennial,” immediately east of Frost Bank Tower, according to an announcement. It represents the first step in the development group’s plans to transform a full block between Brazos Street and San Jacinto Boulevard.

Cielo purchased the southern half of the block, where Perennial will replace Brazos Hall and a small office building, in 2021.

The company recently received approval for its site development plan and is targeting a late 2025 completion, executives said in the announcement.

Plans call for a 30,000-square-foot “Sky Garden,” a 500-person gathering space, private meeting rooms, a walking trail and balconies on every office floor. A ground-floor plaza is also planned with a 28-foot waterfall, and 37,000 square feet will be dedicated to retail, restaurants and entertainment venues.

Cielo officials said wellness and sustainability are priorities for the building, which will embrace nature.

“The needs and priorities of companies and their workers have changed significantly over the last two years and people are placing a higher priority on wellness,” Cielo co-founder Bobby Dillard said in a statement. “The Perennial is designed to make the office a place where workers want to be because it provides a healthy and engaging environment where they can do their best work.”

Cielo also owns the the northern half of the block, abutting Fifth Street, which it purchased in 2020. The firm has not determined exactly what will be built — the site can sustain up to 886,200 square feet — but execs are tossing around the idea of another tower with residential and hotel space. Original plans called for two office high-rises.

“The downtown Austin office market is recovering faster than anyone imagined, but the more we studied the market and this site, the more we felt that a true, integrated mixed-use development on this block was better for the Perennial and the surrounding downtown neighborhood,” Dillard said in a statement.

Signed on to the project are general contractor J.E. Dunn Construction Co., civil engineer Garza EMC LLC and architecture firms Perkins & Will and Michael Hsu Office of Architecture. Aquila Commercial LLC will handle leasing.

Cielo previously co-developed the 29-story Third + Shoal high-rise, which has tenants such as Bank of America and Facebook. It was the first LEED Platinum office building in downtown Austin.

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