Gurner adds weight to Fitzroy North's emerging high-density precinct

A new high-density precinct fronting Fitzroy North's Queens Parade is taking shape.

Developer Gurner is mid way through the planing process for a new mixed-use building at 81-89 Queens Parade. It along with Gurner's 26-56 Queens Parade and Development Victoria's pending renewal of the adjoining Gasworks site makes for three large-scale developments in close proximity to one another.

81-89 Queens Parade is the latest development to break cover, accounting for a 3,201 square metre triangular site that also fronts George Street.

Expected within the Cox Architecture designed scheme is a 1,732 square metre supermarket at ground level, 4,074 square metres of commercial office space and 110 serviced apartments. If Gurner chooses to operate the serviced apartment component directly, it would represent the developer's first foray into the field.

Laden with greenery and featuring terrace-sized balconies, 81-89 Queens Parade would account for a single storey brick building onsite that is now used for warehouse and commercial purposes. The intended development effectively covers the entirety of the site and sits above two basement levels for 153 vehicles and 72 bicycles.

81-89 Queens Parade's cost of development is estimated to be just shy of $30 million.

Also the work of Cox Architecture, Gurner's 26-56 Queens Parade has maintained a high public profile since's its initial planning submission. Originally a Koichi Takada Architects design, the twin 16-storey buildings proposed were heavily altered after Planning Minister Richard Wynne imposed a 10 storey height limit across the site.

Still at planning, the redesigned project is aiming for 281 apartments and 14 townhouses, although this figure will be dwarfed by the numbers touted for Fitzroy North's Gasworks site at 111 Queens Parade.

Located directly opposite 81-89 Queens Parade, the former Gasworks site which also fronts Smith Street is being positioned by Development Victoria as "a mixed-use village comprising a variety of housing types, community facilities and open space".

Indicative massing for the site suggests six separate buildings are in the offing, ranging up to 14 storeys, with one slated as a vertical sporting and education facility.

The former Gasworks is considered ideal for development as opposed to purely open space due to the significant cost of remediating the site. Currently planning necessities such as formal rezoning is taking place, with site remediation and a period of community engagement expected later this year.

Development Victoria's timeline for the project has construction commencing at the back end of 2020, raising the prospect that thousands of new dwellings may be at construction simultaneously across the three major sites that form Fitzroy North's newest development precinct.

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