Orion International Group set for a suburban apartment blitz

A relatively unknown developer is in the process of asserting itself on the Melbourne property landscape with Orion International Group (OIG) accumulating a handful of substantial apartment development sites. Unlike the majority of Asian-affiliated property developers who have sought to secure inner-city development plots for large to ultra projects, OIG has gathered substantially sized middle and outer suburban sites.

OIG's current projects listed within the Urban Melbourne project database have the ability to yield in excess of 400 new dwellings, with this number likely to exceed 1,000 suburban dwellings based upon forthcoming projects. This may prove to be a wise move with many pundits predicting Melbourne's inner-city apartment market will reach saturation point in the period ahead.

Headed by Director Sean (Shujun) Li whose property development background flows to both Australia and China, OIG now holds key development sites in suburbs such as Mont Albert, Ringwood, Frankston and Maribyrnong. A recent acquisition saw 692 Whitehorse Road added to the portfolio, with scope for an approved 56 dwellings onsite.

Maribyrnong is set to gain hundreds of dwellings. Images courtesy Orion International Group

Maribyrnong has become a focal point for OIG with dual projects on the radar. 2 Wests Road has been christened Summus, with local registrations of interest open in addition to the project appearing on a number of Asian-based sales portals.

In its approved guise 2 Wests Road was to have contained 192 dwellings over three buildings in a staged development encompassing a corner 3,871sqm site, although the Doig Architecture-designed project has been revised (at least externally) since OIG purchased the site earlier in the year.

265 Gordon Street on the other hand shapes as a longer term development prospect. Situated next to Edgewater Estate which is itself witnessing the construction of multiple high-density apartment projects, 265 Gordon Street's sheer size suggests that any development of the site will be rolled out over a number of years and contain in part high-density living options.

8-10 Bourke Street Ringwood. Image courtesy Eliana Group

Also appearing on OIG's website is 8-10 Bourke Street, Ringwood. Currently at planning with Maroondah City Council, the three building development finds itself in an area west of Ringwood Street that is already popular with apartment developers.

Covering 8-10 Bourke Street and 1-7 Nelson Street, the application calls for a staged development with buildings of up to six levels. 119 apartments fronting Nelson Street are expected within the first stage with a further 52 apartments holding a Bourke Street address to follow.

Signifying Ringwood's growing stature as an apartment hot spot, OIG also secured 28-30 Maroondah Highway Ringwood with the prominently positioned 9,428sqm site offered for sale during 2014. Dubbed 'Gate of Ringwood' and with near on 70 metres frontage to Ringwood's premier thoroughfare, the site is likely to take three buildings with heights up to 13 levels an depicted below.

Artist's impression of Gate of Ringwood. Images courtesy Orion International Group

424-426 Nepean Highway, Frankston is also inline for eventual development with the 2,678sqm site in OIG's control. Currently known as Brockwood House the double storey commercial building holds three street frontages and is likely to be redeveloped into high-rise apartments in line with a number of other proposals for the bayside suburb.


Development & Planning

Wednesday, December 13, 2017 - 12:00
The swirl of development activity in Footscray has found another gear as new projects are submitted for approval, or are on the verge of beginning construction. Two separate planning applications have been advertised by Maribyrnong City Council; their subsequent addition to the Urban Melbourne Project Database has seen the overall number of apartment developments within Footscray in development swell to 40.

Policy, Culture & Opinion

Monday, November 20, 2017 - 12:00
The marriage of old and new can be a difficult process, particularly when the existing structure has intrinsic heritage value. In previous times Fitzroy's 237 Napier Street served as the home of furniture manufacturer C.F. Rojo and Sons. Taking root during 1887, Christobel Rojo oversaw operations though over time the site would become home to furniture manufacturer Thonet.

Visual Melbourne

Friday, August 25, 2017 - 07:00
The former site of John Batman's home, Batman's Hill is entering the final stages of its redevelopment. Collins Square's final tower has begun its skyward ascent, as has Lendlease's Melbourne Quarter Commercial and Residential precinct already. Melbourne Quarter's first stage is at construction and involves a new 12-storey home for consultancy firm Arup along with a skypark.


Transport & Design

Friday, December 15, 2017 - 11:00
Infrastructure Victoria unveiled a new round of research into its larger programme of work dealing with managing transport demand. The authority contracted Arup and KPMG to produce the Melbourne Activity Based Model (MABM) and while it is new, it is considered fit for purpose in the strategic context.

Sustainability & Environment

Tuesday, October 24, 2017 - 12:00
Cbus Property's office development for Medibank at 720 Bourke Street in Docklands recently became the first Australian existing property to receive a WELL Certification, Gold Shell and Core rating. The WELL rating goes beyond sustainable building features with a greater focus on the health and well-being of a building's occupants.