After the site at 175 Sturt Street was first acquired in 2017, Crown Group has finally made its launch into the Melbourne market with a planned 152-apartment development in Southbank.
A joint project with local Melbourne developer G3, the $140 million residential development is the first in what Crown Group chief executive Iwan Sunito plans to be a $3 billion construction pipeline in Victoria. The Southbank project is set to be a test of the Melbourne market, before Sunito pushes ahead to achieve his long-term goal of recreating the group’s successes in Sydney.
Crown Group’s move to Melbourne has been planned for a number of years, despite a declining residential sector. “Construction will start in 2021, which gives us the confidence to be able to deliver the project at the best time in the market cycle and allows investors to capitalise on potential uplift,” Mr Sunito told Domain. The project is due for completion in 2024.
The development will consist of two residential towers, standing at 14 and 16 storeys tall. Designed by the Sydney-based architect Koichi Takada, the buildings’ striking external design is set to reflect the neighbouring arts precinct, where works are currently underway as part of the ongoing Southbank redevelopment.
“The ribbons will form a beautiful pattern that will gleam white, reflecting the light, creating an ever-changing canvas and a beacon to people in the surrounding area,” Mr Takada said of his design.
Melbourne is not the only new market for Crown Group; their Marilyn Monroe-inspired design for its skyscraper in downtown Los Angeles made headlines in February, with projects also recently launched in Brisbane and Jakarta.
Sunito acknowledged that the barriers to entry for developers in Melbourne were considerably lower than in Sydney; with factors such as site costs, design guidelines and strong demand amongst Asian investors all in Melbourne’s favour. His comments come as CBRE’s Annual Investors Intentions Survey last week revealed that Melbourne had overtaken Sydney as the preferred destination for domestic capital.
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