Seven years since 250 hectares of Fishermans Bend land was controversially rezoned Capital City by the former planning minister, Matthew Guy, construction is set to begin of what is arguably the precinct’s second major skyscraper.
Capital Alliance has appointed Crema Group to build the 40-storey mixed use tower at 199-201 Normanby Road, Southbank – at the “city end” of Fishermans Bend, near South Wharf.
The proposed tower will stare down the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre and Yarra River. The site is a short walk to Mirvac’s pocket of Docklands, Yarra’s Edge.
Capital Alliance is marketing its $200 million project, The Normanby, as being in Fishermans Bend.
“This new Melbourne landmark will house the first AC Hotels by Marriott in Australia, featuring 200 hotel rooms alongside 100 one, two and three bedroom, private residential homes,” Capital Alliance founder and chief executive, Mohan Du, said, adding that it is the first hotel in the precint.
“Each private residence will be provided with exclusive access to all amenities offered by the hotel, including concierge services, infinity pool, gymnasium, restaurant, and bar, as well as room service and housekeeping.
“This appointment [of a builder] strengthens our view that although economic fundamentals have drastically changed for the industry, there is still life for projects that are carefully thought through.”
Crema director Christian Crema added “with our in-house concrete and production operations nearby, we will be delivering on program and quality expectations too”.
“This milestone signals Capital Alliance’s commitment to the realisation of what will be a defining development for this rapidly emerging precinct of Melbourne city,” Marriott International Asia Pacific senior director, Richard Crawford, said.
“Marriott’s ability to gain new quality hotel footholds is dependent on forging strong relationships with developers with the capacity and vision to get the job done – and Capital Alliance continue to prove their credentials for doing just that”.
“We are thrilled that Capital Alliance have presented Marriott with opportunity to introduce AC Hotels to Australia, where the brand’s hallmarks of European design and understated style will bring a new personality to Melbourne’s hotel landscape.” Mr Crawford said.
Australia’s largest urban renewal precinct
Fishermans Bend, Australia’s largest urban renewal precinct, is expected to house 80,000 residents and 80,000 workers by 2050.
The University of Melbourne has announced a future campus in the area, which has plans for new tram and train lines.
In 2016, the Andrews government paid $130 million to General Motors Holden’s for its redundant car making plant, with plans to re-purpose the land as a major, high-tech employment precinct.
Many other owners of industrial property in Fishermans Bend proposed to replace them with high density apartment towers between 2013 and 2017.
The precinct’s tallest building to date, Blue Earth Group’s Gravity Tower, soars 29 levels, near the accident-prone Montague Street Bridge.
Fishermans Bend is often touted by agents and planners for its potential to be an employment precinct, which would be unique to Melbourne, incorporating an industrial backdrop, like Cremorne, but with the added features of a riverfront, parks, tree-lined streets, infrastructure and amenity, including a high-rise primary school.