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Museum Hopes Third Time a Charm For New Home in Downtown Austin a u s t i n T he Austin Museum of A r t’s announcement in February of a joint venture with Hines of Houston marks the third time since the 1980s that hopes have been raised for a new downtown AMOA home. This latest project, designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli of New Haven, Conn, features a three-level, 40,000-squarefoot museum connected at the base of a 30-story office tower. Expected to break ground next year, the project is scheduled to open in 2011 to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the AMOA. Hine’s proposed Museum Tower would become downtown Austin’s next commercial high-rise, the newest since the Frost Bank Tower (designed by Duda/Paine with HKS) appeared on the skyline in 2004. Several tall residential buildings have been added since then, and construction continues apace on numerous other projects across the central business district. The AMOA/Museum Tower project is among a handful in Austin that represent a new building type that partners a not-for-profit institution with a conventional developer-financed commercial endeavor. Other similar downtown projects include the Austin City Limits Studio/W Hotel (designed by Andersson Wise Architects) and the 21c Museum Hotel (designed by Deborah Berke & Partners Architects). Fred Clarke of Pelli Clarke Pelli describes the AMOA/Museum Tower project (shown at left), currently in preliminary schematic phase, as “one of the most significant commissions in the city.” The project team includes associate architect Kendall/Heaton Associates of Houston and the Austin construction management 2011 14 t e x a s a r c h i t e c t late 1990 s 7 / 8 2 0 0 8

Texas Architect July/Aug 2008: Regional Response

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