Dogs, Bikes & Cell Service
February 11, 2015

Dogs, Bikes & Cell Service

Those are among the amenities taking center stage in today's leasing talks, according to Cousins SVP Tim Hendricks, who'll be speaking at Bisnow's Austin Office of the Future on Feb. 26 at the Hyatt Regency, starting at 7:30am.

In fact, bikes and dogs are becoming more important in office leasing talks than signage to some tech companies, Tim tells us. Developers used to put in bike racks because the City made you, but no one used them; now they're popular. Cousins' Colorado Tower has a secured bike locker area in the garage with the capacity to handle 30 bicycles. As for the nationwide trend of allowing pets at work, Tim's fully on board — he's a dog lover. Above, Tim's in front of the mural at Colorado Tower's construction walkways with artist Lucas Akoi. (The walkways and mural are gone now; the building delivered in December.)

CohnReznick (Field) MA/S

Tim tells us it's important to have dedicated amenities space for all tenants' because companies are densifying their offices, leaving less room for perks within their own space. His team spends a lot of time, money and energy designing common areas with conference rooms, first-class fitness centers, etc. But there's one amenity that shouldn't have a dedicated place: Tim says your entire building must be cellphone friendly (there shouldn't be anywhere you'd drop a call), and public spaces should have WiFi. Tim's got proof his techniques work — Colorado Tower is 96% leased. Cousins' next project is the under construction Research Park Plaza V. (Rendered above, it'll deliver in Q4.) To hear more, please join us for Bisnow's Austin Office of the Future on Feb. 26 at the Hyatt Regency, starting at 7:30am. Register here!

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Behind the Deal: The Element Austin

Lynn In Love Photo

Nessel Development president Ari Nessel (here with his family) bought into 5,000 apartment units at the The Element Austin in East Riverside last year to rehab and flip. It had been surrounded by a lot of new construction, making the complex unable to compete with its neighbors. Ari added significant renovations to the two separate '70s-era properties.

The renovations include some environmentally conscious improvements, including adding car chargers, as well as insulation to the attics to lower electric usage (and bills). A large organic garden and composting area, as well as an outdoor fire pit, hammock and trellised area replace an unused parking lot. A walking trail and oversized checkers set was added. There's also free bike rentals at all of his properties, along with some electric bikes for those big hills or a night on the town.

Ari says his goal is not to simply turn a profit, but to contribute to the community. More than 30% of Nessel's operating income is donated to charity. He created the Pollination Project, which contributes $1k/day to individual change-makers and small nonprofits to help them get started. He also wants to create a corporate culture with a happy workforce. Pictured are Ari and his team at the Black Beauty Ranch this past fall. “When people are happier, there is less turnover and the benefits are multiplied. My goal is to spend less time on acquisitions and more time on inner development.” 

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Clean Scape (Branding) A/S

Part of the Domain Hits the Sales Block

RREEF has put its stake in Northwest Austin's The Domain up for sale, the Austin Business Journal reports. Here's what may change hands: office buildings Domain 2, 3, 4, and 7 (669k SF — RREEF fully owns 3 and 4 and is selling its 50% share of 2 and 7; Shorenstein owns the rest); Domain Aloft retail condo; 21 acres of developable office/commercial land; and 14 acres of developable residential land. HFF's Sean Sorrell, Kelsey Ropp, Todd Savage and Andrew Levy are listing the assets and will sell as a complete portfolio or break down into individual sales.

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Be Innovative: Learn the Latest About Creative Offices in Austin

We all know that the creative juices flow in Austin and we even have the proof: Forbes ranked the city as the fourth most creative large city in the US last year. Bisnow wants to help you find the secrets for creativity and out-of-the-box thinking, so we're hosting our first Austin Office of the Future; Creative Office's Impact on the Market event on Feb. 26 (7:30am start) at the Hyatt Regency Austin. We have assembled some of the region's top owners, developers, investors and brokers to give you a look at what it takes to be innovative. Among our speakers are HPI managing director Jeff Pace, Cousins SVP Tim Hendricks, WeWork VP Matthew Shampine, Environmental Systems Design's Jason Schultz and RetailMeNot global facilities director Jeanne McNeil. You can save your place by registering here


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When Bisnow holds its events in your space, you get hundreds of brokers and prospects observing it, admiring it and considering it. A Bisnow space sponsorship condenses and enhances your walk-through opportunities, extending your reach to many enthused potentials who may not have even realized your space was available. At the same time, you're associating your property with the hottest commercial real estate event in the market, attended by the biggest decision-makers in the industry. You'll also benefit from many promotional opportunities to market your space right on the spot, including video presentations, keynote speeches and booths. Find out how you can make the most of your sales and leasing time by sponsoring a Bisnow event: contact Will Friend at

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