Cedar Woods tackles Melbourne's growing pains at its St Albans and Clayton South projects

Cedar Woods tackles Melbourne's growing pains at its St Albans and Clayton South projects
Cedar Woods tackles Melbourne's growing pains at its St Albans and Clayton South projects

As Melbourne continues to experience unprecedented levels of population growth, housing affordability and urban sprawl are amongst some of the greatest challenges facing the city, with traffic congestion and long commute times on the rise. 

In response to this, the 20-minute city concept was proposed as part of the solution to addressing some of these issues and one which is increasingly being realised in Melbourne’s inner and middle ring suburbs with many choosing to live, work and play in close proximity.

Additionally many are adopting apartment living as a means of entering the housing market as an affordable alternative to traditional housing or renting.

Cedar Woods tackles Melbourne's growing pains at its St Albans and Clayton South projects
The 20-minute neighbourhood. Image: DTPLI

The 20-minute concept is one of the core focuses of the Andrews government’s Plan Melbourne blueprint for 2050, with the idea of creating a series of ‘20-minute neighbourhoods’, where people can access everything from work, recreation, schools and medical care all within 20 minutes from home. 

This has been evident in Cedar Woods' St Albans master planned community St.A, where a number of sales have gone to buyers wanting to live close to the amenity offered within the suburb.

The Maple Release, the latest release in St.A, is already 80 per cent sold since launching in March and so far the majority of sales have been to the owner-occupier market.

Phung Nguyen, a 28-year-old radiographer, and her partner recently purchased a four-bedroom townhouse in St.A, primarily due to its close proximity to her workplace as well as the best shops and amenity in the area.

Our reasons for purchasing a property in St.A came down to the location. I work in several different hospitals in the western areas and this played a huge role in the locations we were looking at.

We plan on spending a majority of our time living locally. St.A is pretty much in the heart of the suburb, we will look to utilise local services on Alfrieda Street for day-today tasks such as dining out, groceries and the medical centre.

- Phung Nguyen

Cedar Woods tackles Melbourne's growing pains at its St Albans and Clayton South projects
Cedar Woods' St A development takes advantage of the 20-minute concept. Image: Cedar Woods

In response to the issue of housing affordability Cedar Woods' other current master planned development - Jackson Green in Clayton South - has seen buyers choosing to buy an apartment instead of renting, with over 40 per cent of owner-occupier purchasers in Gardenia apartments first home buyers.

According to Cedar Woods Chief Operating Officer Patrick Archer, Gardenia apartments offer buyers, particularly young couples genuine chance to enter the property market.

Eloise Wilmann, a 27-year-old student and administration worker, and her fiancée Alex Lewis were tired of Melbourne’s expensive and unreliable rental market, and made the decision to purchase their first property together, a two-bedroom apartment at Gardenia for $539,000.

Our mortgage repayments are likely to be around $2,200 per month, only slightly more than our $1,900 monthly rent in Clayton, and we don’t have to worry about being forced to move out with little notice or rental increase – which was due at our next lease renewal.

Both traditional houses as well as townhouses have always been out of our price range. We were delighted when we found the Gardenia apartments, they were still large but offered us a way in. My partner and I have wanted to enter the property market for some time now, but had not been in the right financial situation nor found somewhere we would be happy with. We love living in Clayton and wanted to purchase a property around this area that was affordable and suitable for our two dogs.

- Eloise Wilmann

Cedar Woods tackles Melbourne's growing pains at its St Albans and Clayton South projects
Gardenia Apartments at Jackson Green, Clayton South. Image : Cedar Woods

A large factor in making the move to an apartment from a traditional house was the ground floor offerings at Gardenia compensated with a yard of similar size to most townhouses, says Wilmann.

Gardenia apartments range from 54 sqm to 78 sqm, with some including outdoors areas of up to 100 sqm.

Laurence Dragomir

Laurence Dragomir

Laurence Dragomir is one of the co-founders of Urban Melbourne. Laurence has developed a wealth of knowledge and experience working in both the private and public sector specialising in architecture, urban design and planning. He also has a keen interest in the built environment, cities and Star Wars.

Tags: 
St Albans St.A Clayton South Jackson Green Gardenia Apartments Cedar Woods DKO Architecture

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