Green light for redesigned vertical aged care, retirement home

The Auchenflower project will contain three, seven and nine storey buildings.

Brisbane City Council has approved an amended plan by Australian Unity to develop a vertical aged care complex with three buildings around the Holy Spirit Catholic Church at Auchenflower.

Independent living apartments and an aged care complex, in Harriett Street.

With heights between three and 10 storeys, the facility will contain 87 independent living apartments and 108 residential aged care units, at 9-17 Harriett Street.

All up it will house 18,242 square metres of building area excluding the car park.

AU puts the end value at $100 million.

Four kilometres south west of town, Auchenflower is part bound to the Brisbane River.

Redesigned project

AU picked up the Auchenflower property in 2021 as part of a $65m portfolio also with three established aged care complexes.

The group called in Melbourne’s Fender Katsalidis for the building, replacing a permitted project offered by that vendor, Greengate; it adopts the continuum of care model, which incorporates independent living units alongside an aged care complex.

“The redesign has maximised northern light and views over the Taylors Ranges and Brisbane CBD while improving the functionality and spaciousness of common areas,” an AU spokesperson said.

“A spacious internal courtyard creates a village typology providing residents with amenities including a small café, hairdresser, consultation room for medical practitioners and a rehabilitation gym,” they added.

“Increased demand for aged care in Queensland is being driven by the state’s ageing population, with the share of Queenslanders aged 85 years and over projected to more than double between 2019-2049”.

With lower level hand cut bricks and a mineral print painted concrete façade with metal above, the Auchenflower project is the latest for the pair; Fender Katsalidis also penned AU’s The Grace complex, opposite Albert Park Lake in Melbourne.

The church will be incorporated into the Brisbane development.

Elsewhere in the city, AU acquired a Woolloongabba investment as part of its Greengate deal.

Also two years ago, for the Healthcare Property Trust, in which Dexus is a cornerstone investor, AU struck a leaseback deal with McKenzie Aged Care for three aged care investments at the outer north’s Deception Bay and in the south, at Capalaba – the latter a complex also designed by Fender Katsalidis.

The other asset was at Gold Coast’s Varsity Lakes.

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Marc Pallisco

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