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Chicago Developer wants Hotel with Cabanas on South Congress

Guesthouse Hotel project site aerial view

by Adolfo Pesquera

Austin (Travis Co.) – A Chicago developer is nearing completion on plans to build a hotel with detached cabanas on South Congress Avenue.

The developer’s project will be before the Austin Planning Commission on Tuesday, June 14, to request setback waivers and planning staff is recommending approval.

This is on a long narrow lot at the corner of Congress and Long Bow Lane. The location, 2510 S. Congress Ave., is currently home to a restaurant but most of the 66,647 square feet (1.53 acres) on this property is vacant.

Wuest Group Engineering & Design has been handling the waiver issue for the developer, David Krug of Krug Development in Chicago, Illinois. Austin-based Levy Architects is handling the structural designs and EcoLand Design Group is the landscape architect.

The project name is The Guesthouse Hotel. The largest building described on the site development permit is 40,765 square feet.

Scott Wuest of Wuest Group told the city the waivers are needed to allow “as intensive recreational use–swimming pool and three cabanas–to be constructed 50 feet or less from adjoining property”

In addition to a 6-foot privacy fence and a landscape berm at the edge of the property, the owner is proposing to construct a 10-foot high acoustic wall from the cabanas easat along both edges of the pool area.

A second waiver was requested to allow for the construction of a 25-foot wide driveway/fire access land.

“The site is very narrow and contains several heritage trees which are to remain,” Wuest added. “The proposed hotel has been placed against the church property (Church in Austin is next door), however, compatibility height restrictions and the location of heritage trees on both the north and south property lines dictate the location of the building and thus the driveway”

The developer proposes underground parking beneath the hotel.

“Basement parking will reduce the noise levels and eliminate possible issues with headlights for the adjacent church,” Wuest said.