A prime block in the heart of the Belconnen Town Centre has been released for development and will go to auction next month, with the Suburban Land Agency calling for interest from “thoughtful” developers.
The 7125 square metre block bounded by Swanston, Chandler and Cohen streets and dubbed Belconnen Central is zoned CZ2 for a variety of uses, including multi-units, hotels, serviced apartments and shops.
The SLA is calling it an “opportunity to secure one of Belconnen’s most central and connected sites and to create a new mixed-use destination for city living”.
It is expected to be keenly sought after and deliver a windfall to government coffers.
The site can accommodate 550 dwellings and must include 87 affordable, 10 public and five community units.
According to the sales brochure, the SLA wants a developer to deliver a sustainable project in line with the Belconnen Master Plan.
Any development will need to be all-electric, supporting the ACT’s move away from gas as part of its climate policy, and include electric vehicle charging units for each dwelling.
“This precinct demands people, place and design-led thinking to deliver a revitalised development in the heart of the city.”
Last year the ACT Government also released a community-based design brief for the Town Centre to guide developers that emphasised people-friendly places and desirable urban experiences.
The Belconnen Central site was not included in the Place Design Brief for three areas of the Town Centre identified for development, but it reflects a general community view of what urban renewal should look like there.
The six-month community consultation highlighted an intimate urban experience, better and walkable connections between precincts, open and green spaces, shared spaces and facilities and activated street fronts including cafes, restaurants and bars.
The SLA brochure stresses the site’s premium central position adjacent to the bus interchange and near Belconnen Westfield Shopping Centre and the University of Canberra.
It says the site is part of an evolving neighbourhood within walking distance of Lake Ginninderra and near-future development of the SLA’s Belconnen Lakeshore precinct.
“This will be a highly desirable place to live and work,” the SLA says.
“The release of this site presents a unique opportunity to draw on the location’s potential and create a well-connected precinct that will deliver value to Belconnen for years to come.”
The selling agent is Colliers International.
Its Associate Director, Land Marketing, Residential, Josh Reid, said demand for sites in Canberra’s town centres was extremely strong.
“The scale of this site is not only appealing to Canberra’s larger developers, but also interstate groups who recognise the strong fundamentals of the ACT market,” he said.
The online auction is scheduled for 11 am on Wednesday, 9 March. Bidders must register before 5 pm, Friday, 4 March.