Victorian government sells former Reservoir high school to industrial owner occupier for $12m

The 5.3 hectare block (outlined) is 13 kilometres from the Melbourne CBD. It is selling to an industrial owner-occupier.

Victoria’s state government has sold a major industrial development site in Melbourne’s north.

The former William Ruthven Secondary College at 21-29 Radford Road, Reservoir (pictured above and left), about 13 kilometres from the CBD, is understood to be trading for $12 million.

Zoned Industrial 1, and promoted to developers, prospective occupants and investors, the 5.3 hectare block is now expected to make way for an industrial facility following its sale to an owner-occupier.

The site backs onto Merri Creek, also the suburb border with Fawkner.

Knight Frank directors Marco Sandrin and Brent Glassford represented the vendor, the Department of Treasury & Finance, which considered the Radford Road holding surplus to its needs.

“There has been a significant uplift in property values in Melbourne’s north, spurred by increased demand from occupiers, developers and investors seeking space in these areas” Mr Sandrin said. “The appeal of this location to purchasers has been its proximity to the CBD as well as surrounding precincts, road infrastructure, the local workforce and public transport.”

William Ruthven Secondary College formed in 2010 following the merger of the former Lakeside Secondary College, which previously occupied 21-29 Radford Road, with Merrilands College.

At the end of 2010, Lakeside Secondary College students were decanted to the Merrilands College campus at 60 Merrilands Road, Reservoir.

In June, DTF paid $23 million for a commercial site at 142 Dorcas Street, South Melbourne, which is earmarked to be replaced with a multi-level police complex.

Last week, the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning listed for sale six Victorian development sites, properties expected to trade for a total of more than $90 million.

The site of the former Boronia Heights College, speculated to be worth more than $35 million, is considered the most valuable property within this portfolio.

Arguably, the state government’s highest profile commercial property acquisition was made six months ago, when it paid Carlton & United Breweries $95.5 million for a Southbank office in the city’s Arts precinct. It is mooted this six-storey, 61,000 square metre building at 77 Southbank Boulevard will be replaced with a new cultural venture.

In 2016, the Andrews government paid General Motors Holden $130 million for its home of more than 80 years in Port Melbourne. This site, which the government called a “once in a generation” offering, was acquired to become the centrepiece of the Fishermans Bend Employment Precinct, which aims to be the base for 60,000 jobs by 2050.

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Marc Pallisco

A freelance property writer and experienced analyst, Marc is the co-founder of