CostaFox planning eight-level strata office complex in Melbourne’s “hot” Cremorne

An artist’s impression of part of the strata office building, proposed for Melbourne’s Cremorne.

CostaFox has lodged plans to replace the airspace of a historic Melbourne warehouse with an eight-storey strata office complex.

In the Cremorne pocket of Richmond, which office sale agents say could be “the hottest commercial precinct in Australia right now”, the proposed building at 1-11 Gordon Street (pictured top and left), will contain 5464 square metres of lettable office area above a 533 sqm ground-floor retail space.

It will also contain 52 car park bays, 40 bike spaces and a communal rooftop terrace.

CostaFox, a joint venture between Geelong based Costa Asset Management and Michael Fox, a former director with Little Projects, which is owned by former Toll Holdings chief, Paul Little, paid Icon Developments $12 million for the 1180 sqm land parcel earlier this year following an off-market campaign.

Icon spent $7 million to acquire the holding in two parts. It comprises a red-brick warehouse, purchased in January 2016, and a terrace home, on a 328 sqm block, acquired in March, 2017.

CostaFox’s development director Geno Hubay said the Fieldwork Architects designed project aims to set “a new benchmark in design quality”.

“The heritage listed industrial brick façade will be retained, enhanced and celebrated by activating all street frontages, with grand building entrances and retail/café offerings on the ground floor,” Mr Hubay said. “The proposed, flexible office spaces allow for a mixture of small, medium and large strata tenant configurations”.

AXA Investment Managers is paying $100 million for the nine-level office (the middle building of these three complexes), part of Caydon’s Malt District.

The application comes a week after AXA Investment Managers agreed to pay $100 million for a nine-level, 9600 sqm office under construction at 17-21 Harcourt Parade, Cremorne (pictured, left). This office will be home to software group MYOB which has in recent years leased 5250 sqm in two other buildings in the pocket, about two kilometres east of the CBD.

Also this month a developer paid close to $13,000 per square metre to secure four adjoining terrace homes on 550 sqm of Commercial 2 zoned land between 102-106 Stephenson Street, Cremorne.

Colliers International’s national director of Melbourne metro sales, Peter Bremner, said Cremorne “is one of Australia’s hottest office markets right now”.

“Office buildings are transacting around 5 per cent as both private investors and institutions all compete to get a slice of the action”.

Mr Bremner’s colleague, national director of office leasing, Travis Myerscough, said occupants were attracted to the area for its links to public transport and local amenity.

“There are cafes all over Cremorne, hidden down alleyways and in old converted warehouses with food and beverage offerings that are the best in the country.

“With groups such as carsales.com.au, REA Group, MYOB and Disney able to attract and retain some of the best talent in their industry, Cremorne is no longer a ‘risk’ to move their office to.

“It was so successful for MYOB that they decided to shift their entire Melbourne business from Glen Waverley to Cremorne.”

Marc Pallisco

A freelance property writer and experienced analyst, Marc is the co-founder of realestatesource.com.au

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