Telstra lists central Box Hill exchange block again

Telstra has listed land behind a Box Hill telephone exchange after a reported $7.05 million sale in January, 2018, fell through.

The 930 square metre site within Box Hill Activity Centre is a block, or about 150 metres, from the suburb’s train station and Whitehorse Road commercial strip.

Box Hill is 14 kilometres east of the Melbourne CBD, serviced by a train, trams and buses.

Treated as a major activity centre, by both major governments, for decades, the precinct was battling high office and retail vacancies just 15 years ago.

For the last five years, it has undergone a building boom – comprising hotel, office and residential skyscrapers.

The block (highlighted) is about 14 kilometres east of Melbourne’s CBD.

According to CBRE’s Julian White, Lewis Tong and Chao Zhang, who are marketing the property under instructions from Charter Keck Cramer representing Telstra, Box Hill is the fastest growing centre outside of Melbourne’s CBD.

The suburb’s retail core, the brokers added, comprises about 37,995 sqm of retail and dining space, 190 retailers and 2537 car parks.

Deague Group’s recently completed Whitehorse Towers, rising 37 storeys at its highest, at 850 Whitehorse Road, is the precinct’s tallest skyscraper.

Golden Age Group’s Sky One at nearby 545 Station Street soars 36 levels.

Longriver is constructing a 31-floor luxury apartment complex, East Central Tower, at 820 Whitehorse Road (and, a 24 storey Doubletree by Hilton Hotel at 874-878 Whitehorse Road).

Panorama Investment Group recently won council approval to develop a 31-storey apartment and retail building at 826-834 Whitehorse Road – replacing neighbouring offices on 2650 sqm of land – a block it picked up from two not-for-profit groups in 2016 for $32 million.

The Telstra site: 28-30 Cambridge Street, Box Hill

Deague Group’s recently completed Whitehorse Towers is Box Hill’s tallest skyscraper.

Over the past 10 years, Telstra has been progressively selling redundant sites including telephone exchanges no longer required since the advent of digital technologies.

One in exclusive Kew, at the north east corner of Cotham and Normanby roads, traded to the neighbouring private school Genazzano FJC College for $1.5 million in 2013.

The Box Hill site at 28-30 Cambridge Street is likely to pique the interest of large-scale developers, with 41 metres of road frontage.

Presently it is surrounded by low rise buildings to its north, east and south – giving any incoming development natural light and aspect.

The parcel is 600 metres from Box Hill Hospital, 500 metres from Eastern Hospital and 300 metres to Box Hill Institute (a school which in 2018 announced would co-develop a 29 -storey mixed use building with Orion International Group on a car park at 16-18 Spring Street).

Also two years ago, the Andrews government announced Box Hill would be a depot as part of its proposed $50-$100 billion Suburban Rail Loop (map, bottom), which will link Cheltenham to Werribee via Melbourne Airport.

Proposed route of the $50-$100 billion suburban rail loop (green line).

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Marc Pallisco

A freelance property analyst and journalist, Marc is a co-founder of realestatesource.com.au.

Marc Pallisco