Build-to-rent developer Make Ventures pays $17.5 million for Kensington industrial property

Build-to-rent apartment developer Make Ventures has paid $17.5 million for an industrial site in Melbourne’s inner north-west.

The 3986 square metre plot at 88-96 Stubbs Street, Kensington, was only recently gazetted to make way for buildings up to eight storeys high.

It was previously marketed with a planning scheme for an apartment project (artist’s impression, top)

Make Ventures has earmarked the site for a build-to-rent project in partnership with designer Assemble.

It would be the consortium’s second build-to-rent complex in Melbourne – the group is also proposing a tower at nearby 393 Macaulay Road, Kensington, a project part-financially backed by the Alter family’s Pacific Group.

Make Ventures and Assemble will offer owner-occupiers a five-year lease on the proposed apartments – with an opportunity to then buy it.

The apartment purchase price, and the rental, are negotiated at the beginning of the contract.

A Google Street View image of the Kensington site.

It is expected Make Ventures will start building on 88-96 Stubbs Street in two years, when the occupier of four decades, Flexible Drive Agencies, vacates.

Build-to-rent is a relatively new concept in Australia. One of the highest profile projects earmarked in Melbourne, is at 695-699 La Trobe Street, Docklands, where Salta is proposing a major tower opposite Marvel Stadium.

Salta is also proposing a build-to-rent project in Richmond, opposite its Victoria Gardens shopping centre.

Grocon recently gained approval for a build-to-rent tower: its proposal for 260 City Road, Southbank, will rise 60 storeys.

Make Ventures and Assemble are also proposing this build-to-rent complex at nearby 393 Macaulay Road, Kensington.

Kensington is about four kilometres north-west of the CBD.

The Stubbs Street site was sold off-market by Dawkins Occhuito’s Chris Jones.

Last August, apartment builder United Asia Group, headed by Nicole Chow, paid Vision Australia a speculated $30 million for an 8803 sqm site at 346-350 Macaulay Road, at the north-west corner of Stubbs Street.

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Marc Pallisco

A freelance property analyst and journalist, Marc is a co-founder of

Marc Pallisco