The Andrews government has short-listed four companies to joint venture with for the $290 million Revitalising Central Dandenong urban renewal project, about 35 kilometres south east of the Melbourne CBD.
- Capital Alliance Group;
- Brady Group;
- MAB Corporation, and
- Quintessential Equity.
These parties will now prepare a Request for Proposal document and submit it to Development Victoria in February 2020.
Subject to the government arm appointing a builder next year, construction across two hectares of land near the Dandenong train station, could commence from 2023.
Development outcomes are expected to include apartments, student accommodation, offices, shops, function facilities and conference space and social infrastructure, including medical centres and childcare complexes.
Public spaces including an entertainment precinct are also expected to form part of the proposed design.
It is expected the winning firm will invest about $100 million of capital for assets it will retain.
Dandenong has been marketed for generations as Melbourne’s second city and is said to have a 17,000-strong workforce, working in corporate, retail, education and health, amongst other sectors.
Dandenong and the neighbouring Dandenong South are two of Melbourne’s most valuable suburban industrial precincts.
Revitalising Central Dandenong
Launched in 2006, in the shadow of the now redundant Melbourne 2030 policy, Revitalising Central Dandenong aims to improve pedestrian connections – especially from the train station to Dandenong Plaza.
It also seeks to make more efficient use of land, in particular by encouraging high density residential development – a concept unheard of in the precinct a decade ago.
Since it was introduced, the urban renewal initiative has attracted close to $700 million in private investment, including the State Government Services Hub, Australian Taxation Office, Council Civic Centre and Quest Apartments complex.
In July, Development Victoria appointed Colliers International’s Hamish Burgess, Robert Papaleo and Joe Kairouz to seek a joint venture partner to replace four sites it has amalgamated in central Dandenong for large scale repurposing.
The blocks are bound by Halpin Way, Cheltenham Road and the train station.
This week, the government described the private sector response to that campaign as strong.
“The two hectare development site…presents an opportunity to create a vibrant, cohesive mixed-use precinct, further enhancing the area’s reputation as a great place to live, work and visit,” Development Victoria said.
“The area includes the Little India precinct, Melbourne’s longest-standing cluster of Indian culture and commerce.
“The four short-listed companies have acknowledged the cultural significance of the site and have incorporated Indian themed offerings in their submissions,” the agency added.
Minister for Priority Precincts, Gavin Jennings, said Revitalising Central Dandenong “is an important redevelopment…and the benefits will be far-reaching, from job creation and economic growth to greater community connection”.
Member for Dandenong, Gabrielle Williams, added the urban renewal project “has delivered tremendous benefits and this next step will continue that progress while making sure local people are heard along the way”.