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Fast-growing PlainsCapital Bank will be the first tenant for an 18-story office tower Lincoln Property Co. is building in downtown Austin.

PlainsCapital Bank will take up residence on the 10th floor of the tower, which is due to open in March at Fifth and Colorado streets.

The Dallas-based bank has signed a lease for about 15,000 square feet of office space on the tenth floor of the building, called 5th + Colorado. PlainsCapital also plans to lease another 1,800 square feet on the ground level for a retail location.

“PlainsCapital is excited about the relocation of our downtown Austin bank,” said Paul Holubec, Austin region chairman for the bank. “We are certain our customers and employees will benefit from the convenience of the new building at 5th and Colorado Streets. This move will position our downtown location for continued growth.”

PlainsCapital Bank currently is at 919 Congress Avenue downtown. The bank moved into the Austin market in 2000 and has grown to one of largest commercial banks in the Austin area. It operates six offices in Central Texas and reports $574.2 million in local deposits, according to the FDIC. It is the fifth-largest Texas-headquartered bank by deposit market share, operating about 70 Texas branches and employing more than 1,300 people.

“PlainsCapital epitomizes the type of quality tenant we are targeting for our new location,” said Trish Williams, vice president of leasing for Lincoln Property Co. “5th+Colorado is seeing a tremendous amount of activity and we feel that the building will be a tremendous addition to downtown Austin.”

Lincoln Property Co. began construction on the 179,289-square-foot office building at the southwest corner of Fifth and Colorado in October. Construction is currently under way on the eleventh floor.

The project is near another new office tower, Colorado Tower, which is fully leased, and a proposed office building that Brandywine Realty Trust plans at the northeast corner of Fourth and Colorado streets, though no timetable has been set.

The west end of downtown is booming with the addition of new residential, retail and restaurant projects, including those that are transforming the former Seaholm Power Plant and Green Water Treatment Plant into new mixed-use developments, said Bob Wynn, a partner and co-founder with Cushman & Wakefield | Oxford Commercial.

“All of this activity is a magnet for employers and one of the reasons Colorado Tower and IBC Bank Plaza leased up during construction,” Wynn said.

Rents for top-tier office space downtown averaged $47.47 per square foot in the first quarter, the highest in the region, according to Cushman & Wakefield | Oxford Commercial. In the Austin area overall, asking rates for all classes of office space, new and older, increased to $31.55 per square foot, up nearly 9.5 percent from $28.83 in the year-ago quarter. That’s the highest overall rate the firm has recorded since it started tracking the figures in the early 1990s.


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