19/12/2006 - 22:00

More growth for Northbridge

19/12/2006 - 22:00

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Northbridge will undergo a new phase of development activity next year as investors increasingly turn their attention to the area and a number of planned mixed-use developments get under way.

More growth for Northbridge

Northbridge will undergo a new phase of development activity next year as investors increasingly turn their attention to the area and a number of planned mixed-use developments get under way. 

The strong demand for residential lots in Northbridge is shown by the East Perth Redevelopment Authority’s recent sale of five lots over reserve last month.

In the process, the authority achieved a record sale price for land in the area at $1,889 per square metre for a 262sq m site on Money Street with mixed-use potential.

The deal has beaten the $1,762sq m paid by developer Finbar early this year for Lot 207 Lake Street Plateia Hellas where it is building 31 apartments and six commercial spaces.

EPRA chief executive Tony Morgan told WA Business News the Northbridge property market had strengthened over the year to the point where it was rivalling prices at Claisebrook Cove in East Perth and Subi Centro.

“The lots were keenly contested; it’s good land in a good location with plenty of amenity for residents, particularly with the new Coles supermarket going in on the corner of Beaufort and Newcastle streets,” Mr Morgan said.

He said Central TAFE’s planned $50 million expansion over two new buildings on Newcastle and Aberdeen streets would strengthen the social heart of Northbridge, as would development of the Centre Stage performing arts venue on Roe Street and the multi-purpose indoor stadium, Perth Arena, near the former entertainment centre site.

Central TAFE has begun construction of its new ‘print and jewellery’ building at 133 Newcastle Street and is in the final stages of designing a three-storey, 11,000sq m building on the corner of Newcastle and Aberdeen streets to house its information commons, engineering, architectural drafting and building studies programs.

The TAFE building is expected to be operational by mid-2007 with the second larger building expected to welcome students in early 2009.

Central TAFE acting managing director Neil Fernandes estimated 25,000 students would be using the Perth campus in 2009.

Mr Fernandes said the new campus building on Aberdeen Street would be the centerpiece of Central TAFE and would open out onto 1,282sq m of public open space on its eastern side.

“It will be an iconic building in Northbridge and its layout is very much influenced by different workplace settings,” he said.

If there was a downside to all this activity, Northbridge developer and Psaros Property Group director Danny Psaros said, it was that too much money was going into the suburb now and smaller developers were being priced out.

Mr Psaros is in a joint venture with Luke Saraceni for the Tyne Square apartments on the corner of Newcastle and Beaufort Streets, an 80-apartment complex anchored by a Coles supermarket.

“Northbridge is just about done; the shift has happened. I feel there’s another price spike coming on early next year,” he said.

The joint venture partners have sold 70 per cent of the Tyne Square apartments but are holding back the rest to sell next year, once the development is completed.

Meanwhile, EPRA is forging ahead with a new round of auctions and tenders, including a 1,595sqm mixed-use lot on Newcastle Street and a 1,186sq m lot on Serich Lane, both to be sold by tender in the first quarter of 2007.

In the Lyndsay Street precinct another two lots and three heritage-cottages will be auctioned in the same period ranging in size from 201sq m to 498sq m.

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