The city hall is Austin's most dramatic recent building, replacing a cramped older building and consolidating a number of city departments previously scattered around central Austin. The building, clad in dynamic, honed-finish Texas Leuders limestone and copper, expands beyond its full-block site in different directions through cantilevered spaces above the sidewalk and a projecting “stinger”-shaped canopy that sharply pierces the air above the street. The interior atrium serves as both a court and central spine from which the building lurches.
Adjacent to city hall at 401 W. 2nd Street, the Schneider Store (c. 1888; 2003 restoration, Emily Little Architects) is one of the oldest downtown commercial buildings. It is enveloped on its rear and side by the CSC Complex (2001, PageSoutherlandPage) at 200 and 400 W. Cesar Chavez Street. The thirty-six-story W Austin Hotel and Residences (2010, Andersson-Wise and BOKA Powell) at 200 Lavaca Street combines a hotel with 250 condominiums and Austin City Limits, a music venue.