A SHIFTING RESIDENTIAL MARKET - AN ARCHITECT’S PERSPECTIVE
With some minor corrections and downturns along the way, the Australian (and in particular Melbourne) residential property and development market has seen unprecedented growth over the past couple of decades. CBG, similarly like many Melbourne Architectural firms, are facing the dynamics of the current changes. Whilst our projects cover a diverse range of typologies, including nursing homes and retirement villages, hotels, commercial development, and individual residences, the majority of our projects have been multi-residential developments.
On the face of it, there is a very simple supply and demand equation that needs to be preserved, yet the past nine months has seen a slowing of the market in certain sectors, due largely to changes in overseas investing, stamp duty changes, and the banking royal commission. The result in our office has been a shift in the residential market away from investor driven stock, to larger owner-occupier apartments in sustainable complexes inclusive of communal facilities, higher amenity, and sense of identity. Numerous approved developments have been, or are in the process of being, redesigned through consolidation of units to increase apartment sizes, and to include communal areas and luxurious lobbies.
Derby Place in Kew has recently been completed, with residents moving into their new apartments. The vision of Derby Place was speculative, and some might say risky, at the time when it was marketed in 2016, but hindsight has shown that Derby Place was a sign of things to come. The original permit for 109 apartments in a mixed-use complex above a Coles supermarket was consolidated to 81 apartments by the time construction commenced. Dining and lounge facilities, a large communal rooftop terrace, and concierge were all part of the developer’s vision to create a truly prestigious residential complex.
Pavilion Green in Sandringham was originally approved with approximately 350 apartments. Following commencement of marketing in 2018, it quickly became evident that buyers were looking for larger apartments that they could entertain in, raise families in, or downsize into. The result was an extensive redesign of the development from a predominantly one and two bedroom apartment mix to a 250 apartment development accommodating two, three, and four bedroom apartments. In a market where sales have been slow on certain developments, Pavilion Green continues to buck the trend and show continued strong sales.
Other projects within our office have followed the same pattern as Derby Place and Pavilion Green. Sebastopol Residences in Caulfield, Hawksburn House in South Yarra, Horne Street in Elsternwick are just a few to be designed with larger residences, grand lobby spaces, communal facilities, penthouses with private entries, and greater sustainability as necessary features. With the investment residential sector slowing, the shift to a greater level of owner-occupiers desire for apartment living is driving better designs, higher quality, and greater expectations. All of which align with CBGs on going values and beliefs.
For more information on the projects referenced in this article please click the below links to view the full project discriptions;