Fear of heights debate fall­out

Mercury (Hobart) - - NEWS -

NU­MER­OUS pri­vate de­vel­op­ments are due to get un­der way or com­pleted in Ho­bart next year, but con­tin­u­ing mo­men­tum re­lies on cer­tainty over height lim­its, says a prop­erty expert.

Blue Edge Prop­erty man­ag­ing di­rec­tor John Huiz­ing said there was un­prece­dented de­mand in Ho­bart for af­ford­able hous­ing and even more so for ur­ban medium-den­sity apart­ments.

“There are a cou­ple in the pipeline, but noth­ing that’s been ap­proved yet,” he said.

“We’re see­ing there’s a lag time of around three years from the time a site is bought, a DA (de­vel­op­ment ap­pli­ca­tion) ap­proved and the com­ple­tion of the project. We need quicker ap­provals and also we’ve got to make a de­ci­sion about height lim­its. My view is that the de­sign of the build­ing should be more im­por­tant than height. The debate is not help­ing en­cour­age de­vel­op­ment.”

Some of the in­fill de­vel­op­ments in­clude The Com­mons on Bathurst St, a 30-unit ven­ture be­ing pro­moted as Aus­tralia’s first car­bon-pos­i­tive res­i­den­tial de­vel­op­ment. It is due to be com­pleted next year.

A de­vel­op­ment ap­pli­ca­tion has been sub­mit­ted for a 28apart­ment build­ing at 9 Sandy Bay Rd by Mel­bourne-based de­vel­op­ers Moda, work­ing with lo­cal ar­chi­tec­ture firm Room 11. And 28 apart­ments have been pro­posed for 431 El­iz­a­beth St, North Ho­bart, at the site of the for­mer Blue Gum Ser­vice Sta­tion.

One of the big­gest pri­vate com­mer­cial de­vel­op­ers to show in­ter­est in the state in re­cent years is the Fra­grance Group. Its only project with cur­rent ap­proval in Ho­bart is

JES­SICA HOWARD

for de­mo­li­tion at 179 Mac­quarie St and the con­struc­tion of a new 206-room ho­tel, res­tau­rant and func­tion cen­tre.

The Sin­ga­porean com­pany has not said when work on this project may be­gin.

A pro­posal for a float­ing ho­tel on the River Der­went was mooted in June by Hunter De­vel­op­ments, led by ar­chi­tect Robert Mor­ris-Nunn. The five-storey, ring-shaped float­ing ho­tel near the Ho­bart Re­gatta Grounds would be the first ho­tel of its kind any­where in the world.

Mel­bourne de­vel­oper River­lee has bought up the bet­ter part of an en­tire city block, with stage one of their Odeon Theatre re­de­vel­op­ment open­ing ear­lier this year in the form of cul­tural precinct In The Hang­ing Gar­den. It forms part of a longer-term vi­sion for the site, which the pro­po­nents have said would be de­vel­oped as part of a fu­ture mas­ter­plan for a broader cul­tural precinct worth at least $200 mil­lion.

Mona’s $400 mil­lion ho­tel, ex­pected to be built by 2024, is Tas­ma­nia’s big­gest ho­tel pro­posal in the pipeline, while the $50 mil­lion, 152-room Mar­riott Tas­man Ho­tel project at Par­lia­ment Square in Ho­bart is ex­pected to open next year.

The Crowne Plaza Ho­tel in the Icon Com­plex is also ex­pected to be com­plete in the first quar­ter of 2020.

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