Canberra office selling for record price

The Symonston site spreads 1.6 hectares with three street frontages.

The Geoscience Australia headquarters is selling for a Canberra record price – again.

In the latest deal, Charter Hall is believed to be spending over $370 million for the A-grade office on 1.6 hectares at Symonston, south east of Parliament House.

The purpose-built Geoscience Australia headquarters contains over 32,000 square metres of area.

The vendor, German fund manager, Real IS, paid the Motor Trades Association $234.1m in 2006 – setting a then-watermark.

Colliers’ Paul Powderly, Matthew Winter, Adam Woodward and James Mitchell with JLL’s Tim Mutton and James Barber brokered the latest sale; based on the net passing income ($26.8m), the speculated price reflects a sub 7.2 per cent yield.

Their result smashes the Canberra office record of $335m, set last year when Mirae Asset Global offloaded 50 Marcus Clarke Street for a modest capital gain after four years.

Coincidentally that buyer was also Charter Hall.

Geoscience Australia headquarters

Developed in 1997 for Geoscience, Australia’s geology and geography adviser, 101 Jerrabomberra Avenue contains 32,659 square metres of lettable area, including a café, childcare centre and gym, as well as offices and laboratories (story continues below).

On a site with frontage to Hindmarsh Drive and Monaro Highway, there are also 632 car parks.

The commonwealth government’s lease expires in 10 years; the rental agreement calls for fixed three per cent rent rises.

The occupier recently invested in the laboratories, with a GNSS GPS Calibration system and geophysical monitoring network.

Symonston is six kilometres from Capital Hill.

Elsewhere in Canberra, last year, Charter Hall acquired two assets anchored to Services Australia: 71 Athalon Drive, Tuggeranong, which cost $306m, and the Doris Blackburn Building at 18 Canberra Ave, Fyshwick ($99m).

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Marc Pallisco

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