Council endorses Munro development

By Laurence Dragomir, Urban Melbourne

The City of Melbourne’s joint $230 million venture with developer PDG, for the Munro Site opposite the Queen Victoria Market has moved a step closer with Melbourne City Council’s endorsement of the scheme last month.

The proposal forms part of the City of Melbourne’s wider redevelopment intentions for the entire Queen Victoria Market Precinct. Whilst plans to push on with the market’s redevelopment hit a speed bump due to a Heritage Victoria edict, the Munro Site’s progression is a separate application and remains unaffected.

Despite being limited to 125 metres in height, the raw development numbers for the intended Munro Site tower opposite Queen Victoria Market mean the development requires final sign off from the Planning Minister before it can proceed.

The project was initially mooted with a tower just shy of 200 metres for the 6233 sqm site, only to have Minister for Planning, Richard Wynne, impose a height limit of 125 metres citing concerns of over development and overshadowing. This has not perturbed the development team also comprising design firms Bates Smart and Six Degrees Architects, with the gross floor area for the proposal approaching 100,000 sqm.

The month of April also saw a number of projects reach significant milestones with UEM Sunrise celebrating the topping out of its Conservatory project and JSK Group the topping out of its Union Tower project at 296-300 Little Lonsdale St.

The $330 million Conservatory designed by COX Architecture is located on MacKenzie St and, upon practical completion, will become UEM Sunrise’s first completed project in Australia since its entry into the Melbourne market in 2013.

The project will also include a display comprising 477 pieces of significant artefacts discovered during the archaeological excavation stage early in the project’s life, which will be available for public viewing from late September 2018.

UEM Sunrise’s other significant Melbourne project, Aurora Melbourne Central is racing along to its eventual height of 267m with Probuild at the helm. The core of the Elenberg Fraser-designed goliath passed the 200 metre mark with the first stage of apartments set to be handed over to their respective purchasers later this year.

Upon completion, Aurora will become the tallest tower within the bounds of the Hoddle Grid, eclipsed only by Southbank’s Eureka Tower (297m), Australia 108 (317m) and Crown’s One Queensbridge Street (323m).

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