Amazon spends big for ex-Harness Racing Victoria site

Amazon paid $60.5 million for 54-80 Ferris Road, Cobblebank.


Tabcorp owned 54-80 Ferris Road (outlined) between 2001-2005.

Amazon Corporate Services has paid $60.5 million – 150 per cent more than what the vendor paid two years earlier – for a prominent site at Cobblebank, one of 11 suburbs recently created by the local council to not overweigh the population of Melton, Plumpton and Rockbank.

The US based giant is planning a data centre for the 13.47 hectare block, 54-80 Ferris Road, abutting Harness Racing Victoria’s Tabcorp Park Melton, at a Western Freeway interchange.

Also today we are reporting an Officer industrial site sold for $62 million.

Perth based Michael Hodgson via a company, Ferris Securities, is banking the windfall; he paid $24.2m in September, 2021, with plans for a business park.

That deal was one of two we reported at the time pricing land at c$1.8m per hectare; Frasers Property Industrial also bought the 23.4ha ex-Melton Driving Range, diagonally adjacent at 1-15 Ferris Rd, for $42m – for an industrial estate and bulky goods centre it started marketing last year.

In a show of how fast local industrial values moved in the growth corridor (the City of Melton was from April, 2023, the country’s fastest growing area with annual population growth forecast at 6.2 per cent according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics), that property previously traded for $11.15m in 2018 and $3.85m nine years ago.

Harness Racing Victoria controlled 54-80 Ferris Rd between 2001-2005.

Also today we are reporting a joint venture led by Eildon Capital is paying $62m for an Officer industrial development site – earmarked for c35ha of product.

On the outer, in demand

Amazon recently announced plans to invest $2.2 billion in Victorian data centres – part of a $13.2b national spend to service its fast-growing cloud computing business.

Google and Microsoft are its biggest competitors here. IBM and Alibaba are also in the sector (story continues below).

Its outlay last August for 54-80 Ferris Rd values land at $4.45m a hectare (by comparison, Pellicano recently paid $6.8m per ha for the ex-Lunar Drive Inn, in Dandenong South, considered Melbourne’s industrial capital, commanding the highest rents and capital values outside of Port Melbourne).

While not commenting about the Amazon deal, Peter Sagar, of land specialist LAWD, said Melton and Cranbourne East, Clyde/Clyde North and Officer South, across town, once beyond-outskirt suburbs in recent years considered part of metropolitan Melbourne, have been attracting major investors and developers, especially since COVID.

He expects tenants to follow suit, chasing cheaper rents than the nearby more established areas, Tarneit and Truganina in the west, and Dandenong/Dandenong South, in the south east, while benefiting from the same and large growing catchments.

“Locations like Amazon’s and Frasers Property Industrial’s on Ferris Rd are also walking distance to a train station, retail and essential services – which is uncommon in industrial circles, but will help in attracting and retaining staff” he added.

Zoned Urban Growth, they’ll also have strong underlying land value as Melton establishes as a major activity centre in Melbourne’s west.

Late last year we reported Coles sold the 2.09ha Cobblebank Village – between the Amazon and FPI sites – for a speculated $45m.

Also in the pocket, Northpark, Elite Property Group and Bayport are behind a 4.9ha business park at 162-180 Ferris Rd. Hardware giant Bowens bought into the area too, two years ago, outlaying $12.3m for a former council site on Abey Rd with plans for a store.

Industry Property Group’s Andrew Macqueen brokered the Ferris Securities and FPI deals.

The City of Melton gazetted the 11 suburbs in 2017.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of