Melbourne Quarter gains momentum

Lend Lease’s Melbourne Quarter project is steadily gaining momentum, with the developer last month submitting planning applications for three residential towers.

Comprising around 1600 apartments, the application proposes two 40-storey towers on Flinders St and an 18-storey mid-rise tower fronting a new public square.

Lend Lease secured development rights for the Batman’s Hill site in 2013 and in May submitted plans for the first of its commercial towers along Collins St.

Overall, the developer plans to construct seven towers on the site, comprising four commercial buildings and three residential buildings.

According to the national head of Lend Lease’s apartments business Ben Christie, Melbourne Quarter’s residential offering will represent urban living at its best.

“The new neighbourhood will be positioned next to a thriving commercial district and will present an opportunity for Melburnians to live next to work, which is becoming increasingly appealing for young professional owner-occupiers and investors with a keen eye on the leasing market,” Mr Christie said.

Architect Karl Fender agreed, saying: “Melbourne Quarter is a prime residential location which is enriched by the pageantry of city life and the convenience of public transport, most notably the Southern Cross Railway station.”

The proposed apartments will include a mix of one, two and three-bedroom apartments, with an overall average size of 62sqm.

However, one of the buildings will also reportedly include a number of “micro-apartments” as small as 25sqm.

Alongside residential amenities including a pool, gym, sauna, spa, library, theatrette and bicycle hub, the proposal also includes the development of two new public spaces

Under the plan, a 1300sqm public plaza named Flinders Plaza and a 1500sqm public park would both be built on Flinders St.

“The public park designed for the heart of the residential neighbourhood of Melbourne Quarter will include both passive and active uses and is set to create a green oasis in the city,” Mr Christie said.

Minister for Planning Richard Wynne is the responsible authority for the proposal and is yet to make a decision on Lend Lease’s commercial or residential proposals for Melbourne Quarter.

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