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New East Side condos showcase Austin design, community

Tyndall at Robertson Hill opens

If nothing else, the opening of the Tyndall at Robertson Hill—East Austin’s newest luxury condo building—expanded the variety of housing stock on display in the blocks between East Seventh and East 11th streets, perched above I-35, making that short stretch of highway frontage looking a bit like a sampler of what kind of digs are to be had in the area at the moment.

Located the western edge of the Guadalupe neighborhood of Central East Austin, the 171,000-square-foot condominium complex is joined on its block by a lone, single-family home (the historic Lopez House). To its south is La Vista de Guadalupe, an affordable, multifamily rental complex developed and owned by the nonprofit Guadalupe Neighborhood Development Corporation (which also owns and operates the Lopez House as an affordable residential rental). To the north are two market-rate apartment complexes, Eleven by Windsor and AMLI Eastside.

To some, the Tyndall represents a significant step in Downtown’s “jumping the freeway,” as it’s sometimes called—the advance of new developments on the east side of I-35 that make the neighborhood look and function more like its counterpart to the west (whether or not that’s a good thing, we’ll leave to the opining of local residents, developers, real estate brokers, planners, and other assorted experts for the moment). Lead developer and Momark Development president Terry Mitchell, echoing many involved in the Tyndall and other East Side projects, told the Austin American-Statesman that “it’s amazing to see this eastward expansion of downtown” in such projects as the Plaza Saltillo development as well as his own.

There are a few things about the Tyndall that make it stand out from luxury condominium complexes on either side of the highway, however. For starters, it’s relatively modest in scale (182 units) and height (six stories, or about 70 feet high). It also offers a range of unit sizes and amenities, which makes those on the lower end not impossibly expensive for a fair-sized segment of the local home-buying population.

Units vary in size from 571 to 2,400 square feet and start at around $300,000—a little lower than Austin’s median home value of $355,000, according to Zillow—ranging up to $1.7 million for some of the penthouses. While the Tyndall’s condos cost between $400 and $700 per square foot—still comfortably in the high-end range for the city—that’s for the most part lower than Downtown’s average of $619/square foot and range of $327 to $1,466 per square foot for residential properties.

In combination with its scale and cost differences, the Tyndall further distinguishes itself from many “luxury” condominium projects by actually being luxurious—not only well-appointed but featuring some innovative design that’s both functional and visually on point. That’s due in large part to the work of two lauded local designers who collaborated closely with Mitchell and his team, which also included architect Humphreys & Partners and White Construction Company.

Esteemed longtime local designer Joel Mozersky (whose work can be seen in myriad Austin restaurants such as Mattie’s, La Condesa, Lonesome Dove, and Uchi, as well as gorgeous residences throughout the city) was the creative force behind the building’s clubhouse as well as all the residential units. In addition to such features as 10-foot ceilings, floor-to-ceiling glass windows, and oak flooring, the condominiums are finished out in one of three palettes of Mozersky’s creation—light, dark, and gray—according to the buyer’s choice.

The Tyndall’s showstopping rooftop space was was designed by award-winning local landscape design firm dwg. Central to the design is a unique piece of sculptural architecture that functions as a shade by day and a lantern by night, designed by dwg (which created its “sister structure” at downtown’s Fareground as well) and built by Patriot Erectors. The structure also functions as piece of art to be enjoyed by the community—a concept that runs through the firm’s design for the entire rooftop space, which includes an expansive pool deck with prime downtown view, outdoor kitchens, an intimate grotto area with a community courtyard and a fire pit, and a detailed landscape.

The concept of community, which comes through in the common interior spaces as well, is one that was important to Mitchell and those who collaborated on the Tyndall’s design and construction. “Our conversations around landscape started early and were all very meticulous,” said Daniel Woodroffe of dwg. “When you have an owner whose attitude is geared towards open space yet celebrates urban living, projects become more community-oriented by nature. The Tyndall is a huge testament to creative and thoughtful vision by Terry and his team.”