Melbourne’s ever changing skyline climbs further upwards

Planning Minister Matthew Guy has approved three new skyscrapers in central Melbourne, providing new homes for 4,000 people, and paving the way for 5,800 construction jobs.

The three projects, including Australia 108, will take considerable pressure off existing urban areas by providing homes for thousands of people in central Melbourne. All three will be within walking distance of rail, trams, jobs, entertainment and open space.

“Melbourne is the world’s most liveable city. These new buildings will cater for those choosing to live in our exciting, vibrant CBD area, which is fast on track to being the first truly 24 hour city centre in Australia,” Mr Guy said.

“Importantly, central Melbourne is the right place for high density, high rise living. It has fantastic services, culture, employment opportunities, excellent public transport access, and is the most walkable city in the country. Building more apartments in the city takes population pressure off quieter suburban areas.”

The three projects incorporate important urban design features, including shops and cafes at ground level street frontages, through block pedestrian links, striking architecture, and resident amenities and facilities.

“Australia 108 will be the first 100-storey building in the Southern Hemisphere. At a height of 319 metres above ground it fits within relevant aviation regulations, and will include 1,105 apartments. This includes a good mix of 1, 2 and 3 bedroom apartments that will bring diverse household types into this central city location.

“When completed Australia 108 will be the most striking building on Melbourne’s skyline and a great example of the strength of homegrown Melbourne architecture.”

A new apartment tower has been approved at 452 Elizabeth St, with 75 storeys (241 metres) and 622 apartments. At this height it is just 10 metres shy of the Rialto tower and will include three levels of communal resident facilities, ground floor retail, and will result in a total investment of $150 million in the Victorian economy.

Also approved is a new tower at 84-90 Queensbridge St, Southbank, which will see a building of 54 storeys (185 metres, similar to Collins Place) with 295 apartments, communal resident facilities, ground floor retail and representing a total investment of $80 million in the Victorian economy.

Minister Guy said the approval of the new buildings was further evidence of the Victorian Coalition Government’s commitment to the state’s building industry.

“Victoria has the strongest construction sector in Australia, and our planning system is geared towards maintaining this economic advantage,” Mr Guy said.

“Since 2010, 54% more homes have gained building approval in metropolitan Melbourne than in Sydney, and 11% more than the entire state of New South Wales. By building more homes, we are ensuring we won’t have the drastic and harmful housing shortage Sydney is experiencing.”

Greater Melbourne has had 187,111 homes approved since 2010, while Sydney had 121,322 and NSW in total had 168,429. Out of Melbourne’s total, 93,193 were medium and high density homes, and 93,918 were detached homes.

Source: News Release Premier of Victoria Denis Napthine, 26 June 2014

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