Stantec to move north for new Austin HQ to allow for growth

Stantec, the international engineering and design company, will occupy most of the new Diamond Building at Mueller.

The move to 26,000 square feet at 1905 Aldrich St., expected to be completed by the end of the year, will house the majority of Stantec’s 150 Austin employees and allow for expansion to as many as 200.

“The Diamond Building offices will provide the opportunity for additional staff from our community development, (and) water and transportation sectors to access a more convenient location with more space to host client meetings,” said Todd Janssen, senior principal for Stantec.

Stantec (NYSE: STN) currently has offices at Chase Tower downtown — home of the Headliners Club — at the highly visible corner of Sixth Street and Lavaca, and it also has a location on Bee Cave Road. While the downtown space will be vacated, the firm will retain the Bee Cave office, which has a staff of 40, until its lease expires. The firm also has a small office on North MoPac Expressway, which will be vacated when its workers shift to Mueller.

The move to the new Diamond Building, constructed by Catellus — the master developer of Mueller on the former Robert Mueller Municipal Airport — represents, to some degree, the end of an era.

Stantec — the Canadian-based, publicly-traded corporation — purchased Bury last year when founder Paul Bury decided to sell the locally grown engineering and design firm and retire.

Paul Bury was one of Austin’s modern-day economic architects and civic builders who bootstrapped the engineering firm into a dominant local force that eventually extended its reach across the state and to Florida and Arizona. Bury also acquired other firms and expanded its service line to solidify its reputation on the Austin development scene.

After Stantec’s acquisition was finalized last year, several high ranking Bury employees left for other opportunities. But others have stayed, including Jim Knight, Stantec senior principal and regional business leader of community development, who was one of Bury’s original partners.

Though Stantec operates offices across the country, the Texas region now is the largest business unit outside of Canada.

Engineering News Record, a national trade publication, recently ranked Stantec as the fourth-largest design company operating in Texas and Louisiana. That’s a giant leap from the No. 18 ranking last year. The rankings are based on 2016 regional revenue, with Stantec recording $212.7 million.

The Diamond Building, which Catellus built as spec office space, will support that kind of revenue generation and recruitment.

I wrote about the unique features of the Diamond Building when it was under construction last year. There is also a slideshow of renderings of the 37,198-square-foot property, which is named for the diamond-shaped parcel it is built on. It’s located across the street from The Thinkery children’s museum and not far from Texas Mutual’s 270,000-square-foot corporate headquarters currently under construction.

The Diamond Building includes a host of amenities including stellar downtown views, ample parking, proximity to walking and biking trails and water features — plus numerous stores, restaurants, bars and the new Alamo Drafthouse Cinema. Mueller also includes a wide variety of housing — from apartments to single family homes, which include required affordable houseing

Though Stantec will occupy most of the building, AARP’s Austin operations will also move its 15 employees to an unspecified amount of office space there. Retail tenants in the Diamond Building include B.D. Riley’s Irish Pub, J.T. Youngblood’s chicken inspired restaurant and Lick Honest Ice Creams. Halcyon Coffee+Bar+Lounge will open there soon.

Brett Arabie and Bob Wynn with Cushman & Wakefield are the Diamond Building’s leasing brokers.

The edgy design was created by internationally acclaimed Lake/Flato Architects with an assist on the interiors by Studio8 Architects. Zapalac Reed Construction Co. was the general contractor for the building.

Stantec will handle its own design and buildout for its corporate space.

Source: Austin Business Journal
Jan Buchholz, Senior Staff Writer

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