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Austin: Design Commission Narrows Down Site Options for Dougherty Arts Center Replacement Project

Featured Illustration (above): A preliminary rendering of the new Dougherty Arts Center. Image: City of Austin/Studio8

Posted: 2-24-2021

by Art Benavidez

Austin (Travis County) — The Design Commission received a briefing Monday on the $20 million replacement project for the Dougherty Arts Center (DAC).

The new center is currently in the design selection phase and will be located in Butler Shores Park.

The proposed site of the new DAC in proximity to the old location.

However, commissioners were unable to find common ground on which site plan option to recommend to the City Council. They opted, instead, to support an overall project design that prioritizes pedestrian and park space over vehicular traffic.

Commissioners were at a crossroads on supporting Option 1a–which places emphasis on a Parks and Recreation Department (PARD) office building remaining on site, adjacent to the new DAC–or Option 1b, where the PARD office remains on site separate from the new DAC.

Option 1a and 1b.

Both options call for renovations to the existing PARD building, along with a theater building, a school and a gallery, with Option 1b calling for theatre and school in one building.  

In Dec. of 2019, VBX reported that the city was soliciting bids for a construction manager-at-risk to oversee the redevelopment.

On Oct. 29, the city entered in a CMAR agreement with the Austin office of Bartlett Cocke General Contractors, LLC that allows 1,080 calendar days for completion of the project.

The city had previously entered a professional services agreement in June 2019 with Studio8 architects to become the prime architect. Overland Partners out of San Antonio is the design architect.

The contract was awarded to meet 12.07% minority owned business enterprise and 5.62% women owned business enterprise participation.   

The rest of the project team is composed of landscape architects RVi, MEP engineers Encotech and the structural engineering firm PESC, along with GarzaEMC serving as the civil engineers.  

VBX Project ID: 2020-0A5D 


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By |2021-02-24T12:13:39-05:00February 24th, 2021|Construction Preview, Feature Story|

About the Author:

Art Benavidez (Construction News Reporter, Central Texas) is a seasoned journalist with over 15-years of experience in writing breaking news and in-depth features at the local level. He honed his research and reporting skills in newspapers and magazines throughout South and West Texas along with expertise in crafting digital content as Managing Editor of New Image Marketing Research Corporation. Benevidez is a Texas native and graduate of UT-RGV.

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