Meriton confirms first foray into Canberra with 16-storey development

Ian Bushnell 12 November 2019 28

The current building and the pedestrian bridge, looking from Nangari Street. Photo: Meriton.

Canberra is to have its first five-star Meriton hotel, with plans released for a 16-storey, 250-suite development in Allara Street in the city.

Billionaire developer Harry Triguboff acquired the 1734 square metre corner site at 40 Allara Street from Australian Unity for $23 million in July, saying at the time that going to the national capital was a logical progression for the Meriton Suites brand.

“Canberra long has been on our radar because it’s drawing nearly three million visitors a year,” he said.

The site – fronted by Allara Street, Nangari Street and Rabaul Lane – is occupied by a five-level office building and pedestrian bridge across Nangari Street that will need to be removed.

Meriton is seeking community input on the proposal ahead of a development application.

Plans include a mix of studio, one, two and three-bedroom suites, a penthouse, ground floor retail, a pool and a gym, and a covered entrance for vehicles.

Most of the development (around 70 per cent) will be one-bedroom suites, with 20 per cent two bedrooms and 10 per cent three bedrooms.

Meriton sees the project activating its three street fronts with ground floor retail and commercial opportunities, including at night, and improving pedestrian connectivity.

At ground level, retail and lobby areas will be connected to surrounding public places through a pedestrian colonnade to the site’s three street frontages.

Meriton says this will provide shelter for pedestrians and improve the way the site interacts with the adjoining streetscape.

The first 10 levels will contain one to two-bedroom apartments, including a three-storey podium, while the upper levels will have three-bedroom suites and amenities such as the pool and gym, as well as a garden, juice bar and rooftop green spaces.

Meriton location

The Meriton development will front Allara Street, Nangari Street and Rabaul Lane. Image: Meriton.

Meriton hopes to expand retail and commercial floorspace opportunities, particularly for independent, niche and boutique retail, and create more vibrancy in public places, where landscaping is also planned.

“Civic is the retail core of the city, surrounded by a mix of uses and public spaces. Development in this area will encourage additional independent, niche and boutique activity and support nearby places and active uses along key pedestrian routes,” the plans say.

The project sought to make the centre of Canberra the retail and visitor destination of choice between the CBDs of Melbourne and Sydney.

While there are limited sources of noise near the site at present, the building will include measures to mitigate noise from ground floor and upper-level rooftop activities.

The proposal incorporates a passive solar design to minimise energy consumption and has east and west facing balconies to provide solar shading to apartments and to reduce reliance on energy systems. The design will also aim to conserve water.

Meriton says the site orientation will limit overshadowing on public areas, with diagrams showing minimal effects on the winter solstice at 9:00 am, 12 noon and 3:00 pm.

Meriton Suites general manager Matthew Thomas said in July that Canberra and Melbourne were the chain’s two most requested destinations.

Mr Thomas said the planned hotel was in a precinct that was going through significant regeneration.

“It’s changing to a mixed-use area that will see more ground-level and after-hours activity,” he said. “We see the new ACT Government headquarters, under construction in Constitution Place, as a massive driver for the location.”

Mr Triguboff is the largest hotel owner and apartment operator in Australia, with 4945 suites spread across 19 hotels in Sydney, Brisbane and the Gold Coast. He is also expanding to Melbourne.

To have your say contact Canberra Town Planning or visit the Meriton website.

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28 Responses to Meriton confirms first foray into Canberra with 16-storey development
David Graham David Graham 9:55 am 15 Nov 19

Luis Luiz Fernando Buzzi, bollards are they yours?

    Luiz Fernando Buzzi Luiz Fernando Buzzi 8:24 pm 15 Nov 19

    David Graham yes ... i just finished the painting 🤷🏻‍♂️

Daniel Hewat Daniel Hewat 12:47 am 14 Nov 19

Nicole new motel

Janine Culnane Janine Culnane 12:26 pm 13 Nov 19

Russell Spurrell woo hoo !!

Evelyn Karatzas Evelyn Karatzas 11:24 am 13 Nov 19

Dimi Galanopoulos Meriton in Canberra 😂😍

Giesel Manalo Giesel Manalo 8:22 pm 12 Nov 19

Callum Hughes, Rehana Richard another hotel?!

    Rehana Richard Rehana Richard 9:52 pm 12 Nov 19

    We are surrounded!

    Giesel Manalo Giesel Manalo 10:16 pm 12 Nov 19

    Fingers crossed for rooftop bars!🤞

    Callum Hughes Callum Hughes 10:45 pm 12 Nov 19

    More like a gym

    Giesel Manalo Giesel Manalo 10:46 pm 12 Nov 19

    Callum Hughes apparently the one being built across from us is opening a club lime!

    Callum Hughes Callum Hughes 10:47 pm 12 Nov 19

    Giesel Manalo I did hear that today as well and I may have been a little bit excited

    Giesel Manalo Giesel Manalo 10:48 pm 12 Nov 19

    Callum Hughes me too! So getting foundation memberships if they are!

Gilavon Gilavon 1:37 pm 12 Nov 19

Does anyone know the annual average rate of occupancy of hotels and motels across Cba? 30%, 60%, 70%? ?? Gut feeling tells me we need this one like a hole in the head.

    Stephen Rowe Stephen Rowe 3:48 pm 12 Nov 19

    I recall quite often in various stories about property development the shortage of high end (4 or 5 star I guess) hotels in Canberra, so this probably(?) fits in nicely.

Sean Pereira Sean Pereira 11:22 am 12 Nov 19

At the risk of sounding protectionist, don't we already have enough local average quality builders?!?

Dom Malouf Dom Malouf 11:11 am 12 Nov 19

Max Fisher you'll be the best customer

Gee Tee Gee Tee 10:57 am 12 Nov 19

Is there a long-established live music venue across the road? That's usually where new hotels are constructed in Canberra isn't it?

Lyndon Zoukowski Lyndon Zoukowski 12:36 am 12 Nov 19

This is great, just need the new Casino now.

Mat Barber Mat Barber 7:28 pm 11 Nov 19

Looks good, but I'm sure we will have the usual barrage of "we're becoming like sydney, barrs rainbow hotel, barrs gonna put the rates up, we already have too many hotels, it will be too noisy, there will be roadworks whilst it's being built, but where will the offices inside the current building go" comments.

    Rob Thomas Rob Thomas 7:39 pm 11 Nov 19

    i liked it better when no one lived here and the city was a car park

    Gabriel Spacca Gabriel Spacca 7:45 pm 11 Nov 19

    Well I aim to please Mat.

    Sixteen stories. More wind/shadow corridors. Excellent.

    Justin Watson Justin Watson 8:24 pm 11 Nov 19

    Gabriel Spacca the choices are we build higher in the city and town centres to maintain all the greenspace, or we build over the greenspace and lose what makes Canberra the place it is. IMO a few streets with tall buildings on them is far better than losing the greenspace and having far more expensive to service and maintain urban sprawl.

    Justin Watson Justin Watson 9:26 pm 12 Nov 19

    Danny Williams So those living in those lakeside apartments in the small part that has them are paying a lot more in rates for the privilege. Also the Kingston foreshore area wasn't exactly a frequented greenspace used by people. Any other green spaces or are you just spreading more imaginary ideas that are not actually happening, but you think they are cause you don't like the fact that our government is actually doing a decent job.

    Justin Watson Justin Watson 9:27 pm 12 Nov 19

    Shaun Andrew We are nothing like sydney and never will be. So much paranoia!

    Danny Williams Danny Williams 12:13 pm 14 Nov 19

    Justin Watson you have unwittingly hit the nail on the head - selling off prime lakeside real estate and green spaces located near urban centres at lucrative prices, and then keep milking the stamp duty and rates cash cow ad nauseum, to the detriment of the larger population in those areas - is little more than a money grab by the govt to support grandioses schemes that stroke their own egos and benefit few. Step outside the CBD and you will that in action all over tge built-up area. The Kingston foreshore is not a good example - most of that land was deliberately left barren and not turned into parkland with medium density develpment in-mind - and probably needed in the longer term - no problem with that. But that is very different from filling-in recreational green spaces and lakeside parkland of value and use by the wider community.

    Gabriel Spacca Gabriel Spacca 9:12 pm 15 Nov 19

    Tuggeranong lake area. Green areas along the lake having been and being built on. To add insult to injury the geniuses that are building the apartments have the shop fronts on the Anketell side rather than on the Lake side.

John Hooke John Hooke 6:14 pm 11 Nov 19

Matthew Clayton Timon Howes and so it begins 😥

    Timon Howes Timon Howes 6:36 pm 11 Nov 19

    John Hooke obviously somewhere you accommodate the opposition when they’re playing the Raiders over the road at the new stadium

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