Texas Bankers Association

Banking association builds new headquarters from the ground up

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The Texas Bankers Association (TBA) in Austin, Texas, was looking to move its headquarters to a new building that would feature modern design, provide more space, and include additional floors for tenant leasing. The Workspace Interiors team at ODP Business Solutions helped TBA create an environment that’s as warm, inviting, and accessible as it is bright, airy, and modern — all with a nod to the association’s Texas roots.

Project specs:

  • Location: Austin, Texas
  • Space: Approximately 100,000 sq. ft.
  • Stories: 9 (2 floors occupied)
  • Number of employees: 45

In 1885, the Texas Bankers Association became the nation’s first state banking association and remains America’s largest state-based trade organization for bankers today. TBA represents banking institutions of all asset and deposit sizes, with 97% of its members serving as community banks and 4,607 member branches currently in existence.*

In 1977, TBA’s first headquarters consisted of a two-story brick building that sat atop a small parking garage. After nearly 40 years — with Austin’s commercial real estate market performing well and showing signs of continued long-term strength — the decision was made to not only expand but also rebuild.

By the spring of 2018, general concepts for a property had been identified and shared with TBA’s board. And in June 2021, the original building was demolished, followed by a groundbreaking ceremony the month after. The objective was to create a new headquarters that would represent strength and optimism — for not only the association but also the Texas banking industry overall.


lounge seating

Bringing experience to uncharted territory

For many in TBA, this was their first-time experience with new construction. Because of this, TBA wanted a resource that could envision and help plan its space before the building was completed.

When it came time to pick a resource for furniture and space planning, Workspace Interiors rose to the top of the list. This was due to a combination of factors, including:

  • Decades of experience in space planning and furnishing new buildings
  • Workspace Interiors and TBA’s mutual relationship with Synergy Group
  • Recommendations for Workspace Interiors from the Oregon Bankers Association
  • TBA’s positive experiences with ODP Business Solutions™

Once selected, in May 2022, Workspace Interiors began working with TBA on its new headquarters. TBA’s plans were to occupy one floor with its offices, as well as create a ninth-floor conference center. The rest of the floors would be leased out to future tenants.

With the building still under construction, Workspace Interiors reviewed preliminary plans from the architect and then worked with TBA on an overall design for both its office and conference center spaces. This included everything from space planning, furniture selection, and even guidance on where to place electrical throughout the space to optimize access.

meeting room

Conceptual collaboration

TBA may have been new to new construction overall, but it had a definitive vision for the new space based on its number of employees, objectives for productivity/functionality, and desired look and feel.

Workspace Interiors set out to help TBA create a modern yet comfortable space that would be inviting to employees and visitors alike. This meant balancing an environment that would be open, airy, and bright while still incorporating elements of warmth and comfort, including rich earth tones in specific areas, comfortable faux leather upholstery, etc.

When it came to space planning, TBA communicated its vision for including a specific number of private offices and open workstations throughout the main space. TBA also wanted the top floor to be versatile enough to be used for board meetings, training sessions, and even banquet-type events — as well as provide incredible views of the nearby capitol building.

Workspace Interiors was able to take all of these factors into consideration and provided space planning insight, layout ideas, and more for both floors. The goal wasn’t to simply settle for what was achievable but to pursue what was optimal. TBA would then provide feedback, and Workspace Interiors would either pivot to accommodate TBA’s input or move forward with approved selections. Simply put, this was collaboration at its finest.

Taking action, according to plan

Taking action, according to plan

Once plans were set in motion, Workspace Interiors presented several options and insights to TBA — ranging from fabric/furniture selections to advice on whether to feature standing desks to utilizing plexiglass for added privacy at workstations and more.

In some cases, Workspace Interiors provided options to TBA that it didn’t know existed, giving TBA even more to choose from. As for the conference center space on the top floor, Workspace Interiors helped TBA select and secure everything from podiums to advanced audiovisual equipment and banquet-style furniture for when the space is used for events.

Frequent communication between TBA and Workspace Interiors began at the project’s outset. This included not only the sharing of ideas but also constant progress updates, installation scheduling, etc.

Orders were then placed in phases. While everything moved smoothly between TBA and Workspace Interiors, some outside supply chain challenges were encountered along the way. Workspace Interiors either presented alternative selections that would arrive much faster or kept TBA informed about estimated delivery times for its original selections.

With TBA targeting a specific move-in date and scheduling a transition from its previous headquarters, time was of the essence. As fate would have it, the ability for TBA to occupy its new space was pushed back to a narrow window when it would need all of its furniture installed in less than a week. This was due to some challenges encountered with construction, permit issues, and inspections. Workspace Interiors quickly helped TBA move without a hitch. In fact, TBA moved out of its previous headquarters location on a Friday and entered into its new space the following Monday — fully furnished by Workspace Interiors and with all work completed.


From renderings to reality

TBA marked the grand opening of its new headquarters building on April 4, 2023, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by the governor. Just like the event TBA conducted in 1977, the ribbon-cutting heralded a new era for TBA and its members. The celebration continued into the evening with a reception in the new ninth-level event space and rooftop terrace.

Situated just steps from the Texas Capitol, the Texas Bankers Association building is now Austin’s premier office building for law firms, government affairs organizations, and trade and professional associations. Workspace Interiors is proud to have helped bring TBA’s spaces to life with the following services:

  • Advisory and consultation services
  • Space planning and design
  • Furniture selection
  • Electrical access at workstations
  • Project management
  • Installation services
office desk

Furnished for the future

Equipping TBA with technology-friendly furniture was just the first step in helping TBA keep innovation on the horizon.

With the office and conference center spaces now complete, TBA is setting its sights on future phases, including collaborating with Workspace Interiors once again on furnishing the building’s main lobby, amenity spaces, and more.

In addition, many potential tenants are now actively touring the building, and TBA’s office space has become a “showroom” of sorts that demonstrates the true potential of what can be achieved in the building. TBA is keeping Workspace Interiors top of mind for future space planning and furniture referrals.

When asked what some of the best aspects of the Workspace Interiors experience are, John Brigance, Texas Bankers Association’s chief operating officer, mentioned these top points:

  • Communication
  • Experience
  • Guidance
  • Professionalism

“My advice for people embarking on a project like this would be to engage early, so you can start planning and accommodate for any possible supply chain issues down the road,” stated Brigance. “Also, don’t settle. Ask for precisely what you want because you’d be surprised at what Workspace Interiors can do for you. They may be able to find that ‘unicorn’ that’s out there.”

wall seating

Workspace Interiors is here to support you.

At Workspace Interiors, we believe that a workplace is more than just a space to work. It’s a mindset that reflects the culture of your company. We can help you create a positive workspace that can help your staff thrive, so your organization is able to succeed — all with total turnkey solutions that suit your unique requirements.

We’re so much more than a furniture vendor.

We can help make your purchase process as seamless and efficient as possible and manage any or all parts of your overall design project. Look to us to help you consolidate your buying power through cooperative contracts, so you can leverage deeper discounts on office furniture expenditures.

Ready to start the conversation? Let us help you furnish your workspace for success.

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