The century-old Brackenridge medical campus, which runs along 15th Street between Red River Street and Interstate 35 Frontage Road, will soon be just a piece of Austin, Texas’ history. Over the next decade, the old hospital, along with its office buildings and parking, will be demolished and replaced as part of the new era for the city, in an area known as the Innovation District.
The 14.3-acre property is the former University Medical Center Brackenridge. The facility closed in 2017 when Ascension Seton, a strategic partner in improving local health care, moved hospital operations across the street to the Dell Seton Medical Center at The University of Texas.
Changing the skyline
Behind the redevelopment project is a joint venture comprising Central Health—the owner of the property—the University of Texas and the 2033 Higher Education Development Foundation, a nonprofit created to benefit UT, and which signed a 99-year lease with Central Health. Gensler is the project’s architect. The owner of the property will receive more than $460 million over the life of the ground lease for Blocks 164 and 167, with the first payment for Block 164 made in March. The ground lease is open to annual escalations, as well as market-rate adjustments throughout the term.
Replacing the three-story building on the 1.2-acre site that makes Block 164, will be a new 17-story office building, with completion anticipated for 2022. The project will be the flagship of Austin’s emerging Innovation District by Capital City Innovation, an initiative of Central Health, UT Austin and Ascension Seton, with support from the Downtown Austin Alliance and Opportunity Austin. The project also includes the proposed straightening of Red River Street through the downtown property and will increase public access to Waller Creek. The building will house some of UT’s Dell Medical School operations as well as future strategic partners.