22 December 2022

Former Canberra Times headquarters in Fyshwick sold

| Genevieve Jacobs
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The former Canberra Times site has been sold to investors. Photo: File.

It’s the end of an era for the former Canberra Times site in Fyshwick, which has been sold off for storage units.

Sydney firm Norman Property Partners and Trumen will develop a self-storage facility after paying close to $20 million for the extensive corner block, which had been divided in two earlier this year.

It’s understood that the new owners will retain the former office block and some other buildings. The site may be further redeveloped in the future.

The second block, known as Block B, currently contains car parking and warehouses and is zoned Z2 for industrial mixed-use. The off-market sale is contingent on subdivision approval.

The new owners say they had been looking at the Canberra market for some time and identified Fyshwick as a prime location for expansion.

The 9 Pirie St premises were put on the market by Antony Catalano’s Australian Community Media (ACM) group, in partnership with investor Alex Waislitz. The investors acquired the masthead from the former Fairfax stable in 2019. Rural and regional papers, including The Canberra Times, were divested from Fairfax when the group was acquired by Nine.

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Canberra Times newspaper staff now occupy an office in Marcus Clarke St, Civic. It’s a return to the city for the paper, which used to be in Mort St, Braddon, before the presses were moved to Fyshwick in 1964.

Printing paused at Fyshwick when the pandemic struck in 2020.

Canberra Times building with sold sign

The former Canberra Times site has been sold off for storage units. Photo: File.

This week, ACM announced the sale of its regional newspapers in South Australia and Queensland. The Queensland-based Star News Group will acquire 14 titles. The rural newspapers Queensland Country Life, the North Queensland Register and South Australia’s Stock Journal are not involved in the sale.

ACM managing director Tony Kendall has confirmed this week that the group is also in early discussions with another potential buyer to sell its community titles in regional Western Australia.

He said the company had been sounded out some time ago about their willingness to divest regional titles outside ACM’s major markets in NSW, the ACT, Victoria and Tasmania.

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Given all of the new plans for massive densification and development of the inner south, this site on a hill will be of considerable value.

Residential areas and continuing to move into Fyshwick displacing industrial uses as the costs rise. Industry will move to Mitchell & Hume as the inner south increasingly becomes more expensive, desirable and more interesting with arts and crafts, as well as eating, drinking and entertainment areas interspersed with residences, parkland and wetlands.

Capital Retro11:20 am 26 Dec 22

Such vibrancy, psycho.

Capital Retro8:58 am 25 Dec 22

I’m surprised that no one has picked up on the intended purpose of the new development there namely storage units.

They have appeared all over Canberra commensurate with the building of high rise, storage less, shoe-box units that the current government promote.

That’s the short-term objective. As the land increases in value and desirability, you can be sure that the use will change. This is what happens in industrial areas that are in inner city areas. Just look at the convenience of the location and the changes already occurring in the area. Look also at the ACT government plans for the inner south to see the long term benefits of buying land in this area before it gets too expensive.

HiddenDragon7:17 pm 22 Dec 22

I hope all of that elegant panelling (quite unexpected given the unprepossessing exterior) has been repurposed to a worthy new home!

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