Long gone are the days when Eddie McGuire was helping out with the marketing of Mondo Tower on the Footy Show - back then it was the tallest residential tower proposed outside of central Melbourne. These days Moonee Ponds joins the likes of Box Hill in not needing specialist marketing to get projects off the ground.
Moonee Ponds - one of the Melbourne suburbs that the publishers of Melway street directories decided was important enough to warrant its own close-up red-border maps in later versions of the local map bible - is blessed with a distinct street-grid area that has for much of its life see a range of commercial/retail uses.
The ATO was drawn to Moonee Ponds during the 80s (note also that the ATO has tenanted a new office tower in Box Hill), Mirvac built a sub-regional shopping centre there in the early 2000s and the guardians of the Moonee Valley Racecourse - distinct from other racecourses in that it doesn't sit on crown land - have ambitious aspirations to re-work the course into a diversified precinct.
As I mentioned in the most recent episode of the weekly podcast, we have an endless fascination with Box Hill and the eye-popping amount of development proposals it has racked up - the same can be said for Moonee Ponds.
On the numbers, Box Hill has 31 projects on the Urban Melbourne Project Database compared to 25 in Moonee Ponds.
Moonee Ponds like Box Hill also has a good range in terms of scale of development either proposed or under construction. On the old market site, Caydon is building at the upper end of the scale, well and truly dwarfing Mondo in height and number of apartments.
Yet there are also a lot of smaller developments happening on the periphery of Moonee Ponds' activities district.
Projects such as 350 Ascot Vale Road are common on the periphery of central Moonee Ponds, so too are projects such as Nue on the other side of the Craigieburn railway line and Queens Quarter located on Pascoe Vale Road just outside central Moonee Ponds.
Urban Melbourne editors have noticed some new site works occurring recently on the 33 Hall Street site - a long time after the original retail + rooftop car parking building that once inhabited the site had been demolished. Expected is a 14 level apartment tower.
Looking forward, we are waiting to see more detail on the Moonee Valley Racecourse redevelopment.
The new vision for the racetrack was unveiled during November 2017 however it only focused on the equestrian facilities - in previous iterations, the racecourse would have seen a large number of residential buildings added to the area.
And there are still a large number of open-air car parks in the activities district - could Woolworths do an Aldi and redevelopment them?
Lead image: 9 Shuter Street.