Cousins Properties Restructures Austin Office Portfolio

The company closed a $174 million sale and a $162.5 million acquisition in the city’s CBD.

816 Congress

Cousins Properties has completed two office transactions in Austin’s CBD. After nine years of ownership, the company sold 816 Congress, a 20-story office tower, for $174 million. Cousins also became the single owner of 300 Colorado, a 32-story building, after paying $162.5 million to its partners, Riverside Resources and Ironwood Real Estate, for their 50 percent interest in the property.

This year, Cousins has been working on restructuring its portfolio. The company invested $1 billion in ground-up developments and acquisitions nationwide and sold $600 million worth of vintage assets from its portfolio, Cousins’ President and CEO Colin Connolly said in prepared remarks.

Selling 816 Congress

Cousins acquired 816 Congress back in 2013. According to CommercialEdge data, the company paid $102.4 million to NNN Realty Advisors for the asset. The 1983-built property underwent two rounds of cosmetic renovations in 1994 and 2008 and was the only Austin building to receive LEED Platinum certification in 2020.

The property at 816 Congress Ave. is currently 73 percent leased to a tenant roster that includes the Teacher’s Retirement System of Texas, Slalom Consulting, FactSet Research Systems and Mackinac Partners.

The 435,000-square-foot tower features floorplates ranging from 10,900 to 35,000 square feet and approximately 690 parking spaces. Tenants have access to a gym, three conference rooms and an outdoor terrace overlooking the State Capitol.

300 Colorado

300 Colorado

The asset at 300 Colorado St. delivered earlier this year. Besides the acquisition of its partners’ shares, Cousins also prepaid the construction loan JPMorgan Chase propvided in 2019. The original note amounted to $126 million, CommercialEdge data shows.

When it broke ground almost four years ago, the 369,000-square-foot asset was already fully preleased to Parsley Energy and Del Frisco. Occupancy went down following Parsley’s exit of the 302,000-square-foot agreement last year, the Austin Business Journal reported.

The tower is currently 88 percent leased and continues to attract interest from companies that plan to expand their Austin presence. In November, Miro, a software company, signed a 72,000-square-foot lease at the location, with the move slated for next year. 

The property includes 10,000 square feet of retail on the ground floor and features office floorplates ranging from 21,256 to 22,917 square feet. Amenities include a lounge, conference center and roughly 890 parking spaces.

Just recently, Cousins landed a 332,865-square-foot lease with Amazon at one of its high-rise projects in Austin’s The Domain neighborhood. The e-commerce giant will occupy the entire 18-story building. The move is slated for early 2024 and is expected to bring 2,000 jobs to the Austin Tech Hub.

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