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Developer hedges its bets

08 May 2019

Developer hedges its bets Image

In a sign of the times, a developer in the Montague Precinct of Fishermans Bend is proposing to develop a temporary childcare centre on half of the site of its Buckhurst St development.

With the apartment market experiencing an ongoing cool period, developer Human Habitats has submitted an amended application to Minister for Planning Richard Wynne proposing a four-level childcare centre on the corner of its 6-70 Buckhurst St site.

The site, which holds a permit for four 30-storey high-rise apartment towers, has changed hands three times since it was first approved in 2014. Human Habitats purchased the site early last year.

While it is still proceeding with plans to develop the first two towers, stages three and four, which include a further two towers on the Buckhurst and Kerr streets corner of the site, will instead be home to a temporary childcare centre under the amended plans.

“Stage Zero”, which went before the City of Port Phillip’s planning committee on April 24 for comment, is proposed to be a temporary building that occupies the footprint of stages three and four. It is proposed that the building be demolished at an unspecified later date to allow for the construction of the two towers by September, 2027.

The application notes that should the towers not be completed by that date, “Stage Zero” would be allowed to remain indefinitely.

The four-level development, which sits directly opposite the new Kirrip Park, would include a childcare centre with capacity for 304 children, a minor sports and recreation facility with a swimming pool, retail premises (including food and drink) and car parking.

City of Port Phillip councillors unanimously endorsed the plans on April 24 subject to a number of conditions, including that a master plan for the development be submitted as part of a permit being issued by the Minister for Planning.

The proposal would further expand the Ferrars St community and education precinct, which already includes South Melbourne Primary School, Barring Djinang Kindergarten and Kirrip Park.

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