Box Hill: The new suburban apartment powerhouse

In hindsight it seemed like such an obvious choice that Box Hill would be sit at the peak of high density living in greater Melbourne. A natural hub with multimodal transport options, established health, retail and entertainment offerings and a diverse population, it has the ingredients to underpin what is an now unprecedented boom in apartment living within postcode 3128.

In all actuality Box Hill's rise has been a long process to this point, with a string of unrealised projects over the past decade. While Whitehorse City Council have been proactive in accepting measured higher density living within Box Hill's core, the market dynamics were such that various projects never actually proceeded to construction.

It has only been in the last 12 to 18 months that Box Hill has asserted itself as the dominant suburban apartment hot spot, with the exclamation mark coming in the form of Whitehorse Towers. With its 511 apartments selling in no time and its taller tower soon to reach 115 metres, Whitehorse Towers is the first in a new batch of buildings that will transform Box Hill.

A selection of Box Hill projects that never saw the light of day

A sweep through the Urban Melbourne Project Database shows 23 current residential apartment projects within Box Hill, with in excess of 2,250 apartments in play. Of these 23 projects, 9 are currently under construction with the latest to join the ranks being Elland Avenue which began piling during November.

Further to these a number of other noteworthy projects are also on the Box Hill radar, the most prominent being 12-14 Nelson Road which is seeking approval for a 22 storey building containing 164 dwellings. Whitehorse City Council have indicated 12-14 Nelson Road is satisfactory in its site context and two further apartment developments at 5 Rodgerson Road and 9-11 Bruce Street received planning permits during October, the latter project advancing via VCAT.

Factoring in the projects that have yet to enter the Urban Melbourne Project Database, the overall count of current apartment projects centred around Box Hill's core would exceed 30; a massive number in context.

Box Hill's largest to date - Sky One and Whitehorse Towers

The smaller projects underpin Box Hill's apartments success story, it's the tall projects surrounding Whitehorse Road that garner public attention. The latest to break cover is the most recent incarnation of 545 Station Street which has appeared in many guises, but is now known as Sky One.

Expected to be Box Hill's tallest development, Sky One is championed by Golden Age Group after their purchase of the site from AXF Poperty. Registrations of interest are open for the project which will be officially launched during early 2016.

The northern side of Whitehorse Road will likely also receive a substantial tower with plans afoot for a mixed-use building tower for the Spotlight Box Hill outlet that may well usurp Sky One as the suburb's tallest building.

9-11 Ellingworth Parade and 701 Station Street. Image courtesy Lindellas and Artisan Architects

Box Hill's popularity has also flowed into land sales with multiple development sites currently on offer. The buoyant residential sector has evidently given vendors confidence to hit the market with the expectation of receiving top dollar for their respective sites.

Seven large residential development land parcels are currently on offer within Box Hill, with two holding approval for residential schemes, namely 701 Station Street and 9-11 Ellingworth Parade. These sites follow hot on the heels of 820 Whitehorse Road which was sold recently with the onsite commercial complex expected to make way for a tower in excess of 25 levels.

The frequency and scale of the residential projects flowing into Box Hill have seen it become the apartment hot spot right now. A time of intense change is upon the suburb.

The following is a list of all Box Hill projects we have added to the Urban Melbourne project database to date.


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.