Chemist Warehouse owners invest again in Richmond

The Palmer Street site sold for $5.9 million.

Michael Spektor’s National Retail Group, acting for executives who own, amongst other businesses, Chemist Warehouse, swooped on an undeveloped site in a tree-lined section of Palmer Street near the Yarra River in Richmond.

The 107 Palmer Street office/warehouse prior to it being renovated and extended.

The 916 square metre parcel at #109 fetched $5.9 million 10 days into an expressions of interest campaign launched late last year.

The former National Australia Bank branch sold in 2021.

The buyer is familiar with the area, holding a warehouse converted office on 826 sqm next door (107 Palmer St) – which cost $4.05m in September, 2017.

That asset was later extended, renovated and tenanted to one of its businesses, marketing group, Stratosphere Agency.

109 Palmer St was also purchased for occupation.

Colliers’ Ted Dwyer, Ben Baines and Alex Browne were the agents; their result prices the land at $6441 per sqm.

The deal comes 18 months since a consortium of Chemist Warehouse owners acquired a prominent ex-National Australia Bank branch, on Bridge Rd, beside Richmond Town Hall, it is speculated, for the pharmacy to occupy.

Hub of activity

Mr Dwyer said the pocket around 109 Palmer St is experiencing significant planning and development activity (story continues below).

Salta and Vicinity are planning apartment buildings at Victoria Gardens.

“The presence of major property players such as…MAB and Manor Property Group will further drive the heightened demand and positive rejuvenation of the precinct, which has predominantly consisted of older-style industrial facilities,” he added.

Last month, Salta and Vicinity unveiled plans to develop multiple apartment buildings at the Victoria Gardens shopping centre, at the south east corner of Victoria and Burnley streets.

In 2021, meanwhile, the owner of the Harry the Hirer business, Astrodome Hire Pty Ltd, appointed Gurner as development partner for a c$800m mixed use project to replace 81-95 Burnley St and 26-34 Doonside – all up a 1.3 hectare holding.

“The city fringe is an extremely active office market having made up 44 per cent of office sales in excess of $5m for 2022,” Mr Dwyer said.

“The immediate precinct in Richmond is surrounded by many approved development projects with major retail amenities and just three kilometres from Melbourne CBD,” he added.

“The city fringe commercial market has proven exceptionally resilient with developers and land bankers actively seeking sites, driven by the plethora of leasing activity in the fringe, particularly Richmond and Cremorne,” according to the executive.

Mr Baines said “large tenants, such as Australia Post have been committed to new buildings, providing confidence to developers with new leasing deals now nudging net $700 per sqm”.

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Marc Pallisco

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