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Austin: Local Real Estate Company Proposes 300-Unit Development on Former Bowling Site

Feature photo: A street view of Dart Bowl at 5700 Grover Avenue where Oden Hughes is proposing the apartment development. Image: Google Streets.

Published: 06/24/2021

by Art Benavidez

Austin (Travis County) –A local real estate developer received rezoning for a 300-unit apartment complex at Tuesday’s meeting of the Austin Planning Commission.

The 4,135-acre (180,120 sq. ft.) property spans two lots, with Lot 1 changing from Mixed-Use (MU) and Lot 2 changing from Multi-Family Neighborhood (MF-3) to Conditional Overlay Multi-Family Neighborhood at high density (MF-6-CO) zoning.

Lot 1 is on the west side of Grover Avenue between West Koenig Lane and Houston Street at 5700 Grover Avenue. The 34,660 square feet bowl of darts Bowling, an Austin institution that closed last summer, was the former tenant.

Adjacent Lot 2 is an undeveloped site and west of Roosevelt Avenue where it ends at Dart Bowl.

Aerial view of the site by the city of Austin.

The property is south of The Pearl Apartmentscurrently under construction, and facing the McCallum High School sports field.

The provisional name of the project is 5700 Grover Ave and 5612 Roosevelt Ave.

CO contains the following development conditions:

  • The combination of lots one and two is limited to 300 units.
  • A sturdy six-foot high fence will be installed and maintained along the western boundary of the property.
  • Lot 1 development standards include a maximum building height of 45 feet and four stories, and a building or structure setback at least 40 feet wide along the western property line
  • Lot 2 development standards include a maximum building height of 35 feet and three stories, as well as a maximum of 20 multi-family units and a maximum impervious cover limited to 65%.

John Donovan owns the property through the entity Family Sports, Inc. Donovan told the Austin American Statesman he closed the bowling alley last year due to the financial strain the pandemic had placed on the business and was unsure what would happen to the property after years of turning down property investors.

David Hartmanwith an Austin-based law firm Smith Robertson, LLPrepresented the project to the committee.

Hartman said in a letter submitted to the commission that the developer proposed to build 300 units, most of which would be located in a four-story building under 45 feet in height.

The real estate blog, Austin towersidentified Oden Hughes as project developer. Oden Hughes is an integrated real estate company involved in development, construction and investment.

The building would be of a similar scale to The Pearl Apartments building, according to the submitted documents.

An artistic rendition of The Pearl Apartments by Lincoln Property Company.

A second smaller building, with 16 to 20 dwellings, is planned on the south side of lot two.

Most or all of the parking will be in the four-story parking deck accessible from Grover Avenue, with four parking spaces potentially provided under the smaller building.

Compatibility requirements will guide design decisions related to building height and setback, as there is a Single Family Neighborhood Plan (SF-3-NP) along most of the western boundary of the site and also on the property of McCallum High School.

A park designation will be required for new residential units offered by this development, multi-family with MF-6-CO zoning, at the time of subdivision or site plan.

City Council is expected to vote on the recommendation at its July 29 meeting.

VBX Project ID: 2021-451E

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