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CBD | 308 Exhibition Street | 70L + 70L | 254m | Mixed Use

Bilby's picture
#1

Here we go ... this is certainly a significant site, and without direct heritage impact (unless you consider the "...unparalleled protected views over UNESCO world heritage listed Carlton Gardens" an issue in terms of the WH buffer zone). I always find it amusing when real estate agents and developers spruik up the benefits of proximity to heritage sites. Anyway, the site clearly has potential for something of significance - one for the skyscraper fans?

http://www.realcommercial.com.au/property-land+development-vic-melbourne...

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Andrew's picture

I guess Telstra aren't going to build that new HQ there then.

Image from Bilbys link.

Edit: Huh, apparently the northern half of the site (where the 2 storey building is, where this rendered building is) was built with foundations for twin towers 30 years ago.

Telstra’s vast corner site is currently occupied by a 17-storey communications tower set back from the street behind plazas and gardens on its ­southern half.

On its northern half, the property comprises a two-storey amenities building and basement carpark, which were built for Telstra’s precursor Telecom 30 years ago. The northern half contains foundations for a twin tower that was never built.

Read more: http://www.afr.com/real-estate/commercial/telstra-earmarks-site-for-an-8...

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Alastair Taylor's picture

Ah so the Exhibition Street exchange is staying after all...

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Andrew's picture

It seems like they are subdividing the site, keeping the southern half of the site (including the exchange building) and maybe selling that and leasing office space there in the future. Who knows.

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Mark Baljak's picture

Malaysians plan $640m development for Melbourne CBD

The Malaysian development giant SP Setia has seized its fifth project in Australia, buying a key site in Melbourne’s Exhibition Street from Telstra and flagged the launch of a landmark $640 million mixed-use project in the central business district.

The group unveiled its plans late on Friday after winning a keenly contested battle for 308 Exhibition Street, which can sustain two major towers, by agreeing to outlay $101m.

“This is a golden opportunity for SP Setia to deliver another development par excellence in Melbourne, the world’s most liveable city for the fifth year in a row,” SP Setia president Dato Khor Chap Jen said.

“This exciting acquisition reinforces SP Setia’s significant presence as a prominent property developer in Australia.”

The deal comes after the Malaysian company snapped up smaller sites in the inner-Melbourne suburbs of Prahran and Carnegie this year, building on the success of its Fulton Lane project in the city’s CBD district and Parque Melbourne on St Kilda Road.

“This is the largest east-end CBD development site in Melbourne to be sold in over a decade,” Mr Khor said.

“Once transformed by Setia, we are confident that it will be the epicentre of Melbourne CBD’s cultural, commercial, education and city garden hubs.”

SP Setia’s project, on the corner of La Trobe and Exhibition streets, will span retail levels, A-grade office space and luxurious apartment towers. The ambitious project, with about 800 units, is slated to be launched in the second half of 2017.

Telstra last March dumped plans for a new $950m office tower at the site, despite winning interest from construction firms Lend Lease and Grocon for the lucrative contract.

The 4140sq m site was put on the block last December, with architects Bates Smart preparing a concept plan for a four-level retail mall and two major towers sitting above the podium of the building.

Charter Keck Cramer managed the transaction on behalf of Telstra.

The deal was struck by a CBRE team consisting of Mark Wizel, Mark Granter, Josh Rutman and Lewis Tong.

Local Melbourne developer Salta was the most prominent local player to seek out the site, and many of the interested Asian developers were looking to add to existing Melbourne holdings. A number of hotel chains also chased the site.

“It’s right up there in terms of the very best sales to have occurred in the Melbourne CBD development land market since the start of the offshore buyer cycle in around 2009,” Mr Wizel said.

“The fact that the site was sold without a planning permit sends a clear message of stability from the developer community in their understanding of and adherence to the new planning legislation implemented by Victorian Planning Minister Richard Wynne.”

The sale recasts the debate about Melbourne’s apartment development market, with foreign developers still keen to boost their exposure despite the pullback by local banks and warnings from financial regulators.

Lord Mayor Robert Doyle said: “This record-breaking sale price for a city site is a great vote of confidence in the Melbourne property market.”

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3000's picture

Can't wait for a design, I'm expecting big things for this site.

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Qantas743's picture

It would have to be a single tower for the height to be anything of significance.

I'm tipping 2 towers around 140m.

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Michael Berquez's picture

And how would you expect them to fit 800 apartments, office space and retail into two 140m towers?

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Nicholas Harrison's picture

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db2's picture

447 Collins is 2 towers at 140m; only 315m apartments. This will be much taller than 447 Collins to fit 800 dwellings.

This site being sold at $101 million is looking at two towers more along the lines of 140m and 210m (likely more).

Even under the new planning rules developers CAN go tall. Being in the north east of the CBD shadowing should not be a concern. One of the towers will be north of 200m.

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db2's picture

@Nicholas Harrison,

Those twins look about 240m & 230m.

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3000's picture

Will one be an office tower and another resi?
I'm guessing the podium will be a new retail section which will help get that end of the CBD buzzing.
Also I think Q was putting his cynical spin there, "Melbourne is doomed bc not everything is a 300m monster with zero setbacks".
They can go tall here providing it's got ample office and retail. But I have a feeling a project this size will have a fair few conditions to meet (similar to 447) before Wynne will approve it. Which is good or bad depending on where you sit with the current planning rules.

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Mark Baljak's picture

^^ hope so, it's a bit sleepy in that part of town

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Adam Ford's picture

Has the Planning Minister actually legislated that every CBD apartment tower render is now required to include a MINIMUM of TWO hot air balloons?

Those being how we commute down here, of course...

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Rohan Storey's picture

Not bad, and one place in the cbd where they should be able to go as tall as they like, or even exceed proposed plot ratio, given that it faces north, can't be built out, won't overshadow anything much. Maybe affordable family friendly flats, and/or low cost start up office space or similar. No need for a park contribution here.

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3000's picture

It won't be affordable housing. The minister is is full of wishful thinking if he thinks Asian money will do anything that might lessen their total profit on a site. I wish it could be done but I honestly don't think they will.

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Ryan Seychell's picture

Tighter Melbourne planning rules killed off developer's Telstra site bid

A Chinese-backed developer withdrew its deposit for the $101 million Telstra site on Exhibition street, which sold last month, because of the tighter planning rules announced in April by Victorian Planning Minister Richard Wynne.

The new "plot ratio" rules, due to come into effect at the end of the year, effectively reduce the number of apartments that can be developed on a site.

"We were doing the running on the Telstra site for a locally based buyer with Asian capital. The feedback was quite good. A deposit had been paid," said Nick Holuigue who heads the development practice team at lawyers Maddocks.

"The day the new plot ratios were announced, we were instructed to withdraw the bid.

"I understand another bidder pulled out of the Telstra site on similar grounds."

The 4000-square-metre Telstra site fronting Exhibition and La Trobe streets and overlooking Carlton Gardens attracted bids from offshore and local heavyweights before being snapped up by Malaysia's largest listed developer, SP Setia in a record-breaking deal for a city site, according to selling agents CBRE.

Read more: http://www.afr.com/real-estate/tighter-melbourne-planning-rules-killed-o...
Follow us: @FinancialReview on Twitter | financialreview on Facebook

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Bilby's picture

So? It will find a different buyer, who will develop the site under different assumptions.

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Ryan Seychell's picture

Already has

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3000's picture

And hopefully we get a better outcome because of it. "Rich, Chinese investor pulls out because the rules don't allow a free for all anymore. More at 7"

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db2's picture

So a Chinese developer withdrew BUT the site still sold to the Malaysian based SP Setia for a CBD record breaking price of $101 million dollars.

A non-story story. Sky is falling, sky is falling, the site only sold for $101 million dollars. Doom, death. Jeepers; get a grip.

Hopefully SP Setia hires some good architects and produces a nice proposal in consultation with the City Council planning department. My suggestion to them: two towers, one at 140m the other at 220m. On the taller one stick a 40m spire to boost the height to 260m :)

This is a big site, it can host a landmark. At $101 million, it will have a landmark tower, mark my words.

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Michael Berquez's picture

Yep, funny how the media failed to mention the reason the Chinese buyers pulled out......(because the Malaysians out bid them)

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3000's picture

I've got high hopes for this site.

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Ryan Seychell's picture

Application submitted:

288-326 Exhibition Street
Demolition of existing buildings and construction of two mixed use towers comprising hotel, apartments, retail, restaurant, health centre and child care centre

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Qantas743's picture

We wait with baited breath...

Apparently one of the losing bidders for the site had plans for 2 x 80 levels which supposedly complied with the interim plot ratios etc.

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Primal Beauty's picture

Yay...lets hope something good comes out of this...it will change the face of that side of the city for better!

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