Are Melbourne Apartments Still a Safe Investment?

So now what?

After nine years adopting the previous state government’s hugely contentious Melbourne 2030 planning policy – the city’s development landscape is set to change, and apartments may be on the nose.

In one of its first official acts – and as it promised to do before the November 21 election – the Baillieu government has destroyed Labor government planning laws facilitating higher density redevelopment (ie, over three storeys) along all public transport nodes.

In Opposition, Planning Minister Matthew Guy said Melbourne risked becoming dysfunctional, and losing its character permanently, unless suburban apartment construction was curbed.

In power, Mr Guy has committed to a two year audit and consultation program to determine a new model of metropolitan planning.

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Pace Proposes Colourful 18-Level Tower For St Kilda Junction

THE Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal will decide whether a developer can replace rundown offices at one of Melbourne’s busiest intersections with a colourful, 18-level apartment tower, sure to be a landmark within the bayside suburb of St Kilda.

Plans for the 2-8 St Kilda Road proposal show a unique building which will appear as several stacks packed on top of each other. Each stack (of between two to four levels of apartments) are burgundy, teal, orange, green, yellow and white.

The City of Port Phillip council refused the application citing height, scale and intensity concerns. Mayor Rachel Powning warned the building would negatively impact traffic flow and road safety around the St Kilda junction which connects St Kilda Road with Fitzroy Street, Punt, Dandenong and Queens roads.

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Victorian Planning Minister Approves $271 Million Expansion of SP Ausnet Facility, Brunswick East

ONE of Brunswick East’s biggest developments will take place behind wire gates, after planning minister Matthew Guy approved a $271 million expansion of SP Ausnet’s Brunswick Terminal Station, at the T-intersection of Glenlyon Road and King Street.

The application for the site, which abuts the Merri Creek and is near the suburb border of Fitzroy North and Northcote, was to have been decided by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal after the Moreland City Council rejected the proposal last November.

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Skyscraper Approved Behind 420 Spencer Street, Site Now For Sale

ONE of the inner-city’s most distinctive art deco commercial buildings – on a gateway site connecting West Melbourne to the CBD – will be retained and form the entrance of a major apartment skyscraper.

Planning minister Matthew Guy has approved the development of a 32-level, 368 unit apartment tower on land behind the Streamline Moderne building at 420 Spencer Street, near the Flagstaff Gardens, at the north-west tip of town and within an area that is quickly becoming a development hot-spot.

Constructed in 1930 as the headquarters and showroom for Australian Glass Manufacturers, and extended in 1937, 420 Spencer Street (pictured) was until recently occupied by retailer Nightingale Electrics. The building, recognised by the National Trust, used materials such as metal window door frames in its then-modern design.

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Truganina South Melbourne’s Newest Suburb

A NEW Melbourne suburb, 19 kilometres south-west of town, has been unveiled.

Truganina South will be developed on a 250 hectare block of land near Hoppers Crossing and in the council area of Wyndham which was recently identified as the country’s fastest growing.

Planning minister Matthew Guy (pictured, right) launched the suburb bound by Leakes, Palmers and Sayers roads, and, traveling west, farmland on the way to Derrimut Road.

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New Skyscraper Plan For 420 Spencer Street, West Melbourne

UNHAPPY with a permit for a landmark 26-storey tower – handed out in 2002 by then-planning minister Mary Delahunty – the new owners of a historic 1930s theatre near the Queen Victoria Market have applied with the new planning minister, Matthew Guy, to build something taller and denser.

Delahunty, whose recent autobiography confirmed developers wield influence over the ALP government in covert ways, controversially approved a plan nine years ago which would have seen the art-deco building at 420 Spencer Street, at the south-east corner of Dudley Street, in West Melbourne, demolished and replaced with an 83-metre Fender Katsalidis skyscraper.

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Major 24-Level Skyscraper Proposed For Footscray

SPOTTING Footscray from the CBD, Geelong, Melbourne Airport, or any building in metropolitan Melbourne with a westerly outlook may be a lot easier from next year.

New planning minister Matthew Guy is reviewing an application for a 24-level, 222-unit complex which, if approved, would be the most ambitious skyscraper ever built in Melbourne’s western suburbs.

The $90 million proposal, which will also include ground floor shops and a five-level underground car park will replace a double-storey factory bound by Moreland and Warde streets, and Neilson Place. The site is west of the Le Mans Toyota dealership which recently sold for $21 million to the state government’s development arm, VicUrban.

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