Childcare operator outbids residential developers for Bulleen block

The three neighbouring homes (outlined) are near Koonung Reserve.

A childcare centre operator has outbid residential developers to snare a large site in Melbourne’s north-east.

Alpha is paying $3.25 million for the 1931 square metre holding – three neighbouring residential homes – covering 54-58 Thompsons Road, Bulleen.

The offering (pictured top, left and bottom) was targeted to a range of prospective builders. Its zoning – General Residential – was expected to attract developers which might consider replacing the site with a medium density townhouse or low-rise apartment complex.

The median price for units in Bulleen is $748,000 according to the Real Estate Institute of Victoria – well above the metropolitan Melbourne average of $604,000.

Instead the property will make way for a childcare centre – a sector which has been making headlines in recent months given, amongst other things, investor demand.

The Bulleen site was marketed by Knight Frank’s Andrew Greenway and James Thorpe in conjunction with Australian Professionals Property Service’s Paul Doherty.

In August, a China-based investor paid $11.3 million, reflecting a yield of 5.97 per cent, for a childcare complex under construction on a 2186 sqm block at 31 Nepean Highway, Elsternwick.

Two weeks ago, another Chinese investor paid $11.7 million for an asset in Bentleigh (this deal was struck on a yield of 5.5 per cent passing yield).

This week, a modern childcare complex at 189 St Helena Road, in the Greensborough pocket of St Helena – was listed for sale. If it too sells on a sub six per cent yield, the vendor will be celebrating a payday of more than $7 million.

The marketing agents promoted the median house price of the adjoining suburbs to lure home builders, but in the end, a childcare operator snared 54-58 Thompsons Road, Bulleen (circled).

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Marc Pallisco

A freelance property writer and experienced analyst, Marc is the co-founder of