Feature Illustration: Conceptual rendering of the plaza entrance to the new SHI International Corporation divisional headquarters at Garza Ranch. Courtesy: GSC Architects and Bogza.
by Adolfo Pesquera
Austin (Travis County) — Brandywine Realty Trust is reaching the midway point on its efforts to build a new divisional headquarters for SHI International Corporation, a multinational software reseller based in Somerset, New Jersey.
Garza Ranch, a 34-acre mixed-use commercial project that Brandywine has been planning for years, is beginning to take shape. The residential component, a 325,000 square foot, 370-unit midrise by Trammell Crow Residential, has not yet appeared on their website as a project in development.
Brandywine was still doing grading and installing basic infrastructure–roads, sidewalks, utilities–through most of 2018. Last April, Brandywine announced that SHI would be the anchor tenant in the office component of the development. Brandywine planned two office buildings, a delta shaped 250,000-square-foot building where SHI will go, and a 150,000-square-foot building facing the South MoPac Expressway.
The master site plan for Garza Ranch, a 34-acre mixed-use commercial development by Brandywine Realty Trust.
GSC Architects is the lead designer on the SHI project. They’re working in collaboration with Bogza. The project name, 3828 Pecana Trail, refers to a new street within the development that feeds onto Ben Garza Lane at the 3900 block.
GSC Architects started the review process in May and the city’s Development Services Department approved the building permit Oct. 12, according to city records. On Feb. 20, GSC filed a report with the state that implies the structural work is nearing completion, since the report give notice that “tenant finish out” on 205,000 square feet of the building is estimated to being June 3 and reach completion “Jan. 1, 2021”; that last date is probably a typographical error as other reports estimate completion by January 2020.
The finish out work has an estimated cost of $18 million. And in a separate application to the city, GSC requested permission to install a solar array system on the office building. That request was approved earlier today (Feb. 27), according to city records.
Bird’s-eye view of the delta wing shaped 250,000-square-foot building at Garza Ranch by GSC Architects and Bogza.
GSC has been promoting the SHI building project on its own website:
Optimizing its prominent location on Ben Garza Lane in the Garza Ranch, the building features a first-floor patio and a 4500 SF outdoor terrace on the 4th floor with stellar views of the Barton Creek Greenbelt.
Expected to open in January 2020, the building establishes a modern and inviting presence involving curtain wall glass, precast panels, and aluminum composite parapets. The blue and white geometric forms create both and inviting entrance and unique way-finding experience for visitors.
A plaza neighboring the Fitness Center will serve as an inspiring natural-air venue for scheduled outdoor classes for employees.
A covered walkway connects SHI/Garza to a bountiful 6-level parking garage with a park-on-ramp design. The modern interiors include a first floor public and private lobby, open office workstations and conference rooms. The new construction is a USGBC LEEDv4 BD+C certified building.
Solar arrays installed on the SHI/Garza office roof will harness the sun and account for over 31 percent of SHI’s energy usage.
Illustration of the SHI employees’ patio deck. Courtesy: GSC Architects and Bogza.
When Brandywine announced the SHI building project, the developer also noted that Austin-based Pathfinder Development would be constructing a five-story, 140-room, 90,000-square-foot Aloft boutique hotel. Construction on the hotel was to have began in the fourth quarter 2018 and is expected to open then end of 2019. Brandywine claims the total investment in Garza Ranch could be as much as $350 million.
SHI currently occupies two office buildings at 1300 South and 1500 South MoPac Expressway. The move will allow SHI to expand staffing from 1,000 to 1,300 employs. The company has more than 4,000 employees worldwide.