Hot on the heels of the news that a further 380 apartments have been approved within Footscray's Joseph Road Precinct, 8 Hopkins Street has re-emerged under the guidance of a new developer/architect combination.
After the site's sale via a public EOI campaign, St Kilda Road-based Golden Asset Group now maintains control over the 13,000sqm land holding, with Kavellaris Urban Design responsible for the redrawn plans which seeks approval for 939 apartments. Superseding the initial Hayball scheme with 795 apartments over one, two, three, loft, studio and townhouse options, the rejigged design calls for one and two bedroom dwellings to be progressively built over differing development stages.
In a report due to be tabled toward the end of July, Maribyrnong City Council's City Development Special Committee has been directed to rebuff the development in its current form, owing to a number of planning concerns.
The former Le Mans Toyota dealership is in the heart of Joseph Road Precinct, falling under the control of Places Victoria after the agency paid $21 million for the land asset. The Victorian Government's property development agency then went to planning with the aforementioned Hayball scheme in mind.
The application was first referred to Maribyrnong City Council during 2013 by the Minister for Planning, which envisaged eight buildings of up to 24 storeys. Coinciding with the assessment of the Hayball masterplan was a sales campaign which saw 8 Hopkins Road offloaded to an undisclosed buyer near the turn of 2014.
Golden Asset Group initiated demolition works onsite during early stages of 2015, with the bulk of all structures now non-existent. The Adjoining Riverina project as the first development within Joseph Road Precinct to advance to sales, is set to proceed with construction tenders now current.
Areas of concern as outlined within the Council report concerning 8 Hopkins Street:
Consequently the report recommends that the City Development Special Committee (read Maribyrnong City Council) advises the Minister for Planning that it objects to the revised 8 Hopkins Street proposal.
Within Maribyrnong City Council's analysis of 8 Hopkins Street is mention of the four approvals granted to date within Joseph Road Precinct, namely Riviera at 18-24 Hopkins Street, 10 Moreland Street, 2 Hopkins Street and The Tannery at 4 Neilson Place.
Including 8 Hopkins Street, Council is critical of the quintet in that none provide public, social or affordable housing options, little or no office space/meaningful employment generating uses and limited space allocated toward entertainment, recreational or community facilities. From the local council's perspective the same points of concern have arisen on every occasion.
Maribyrnong City Council have evidently been nothing if not consistent in their opposition to certain aspects of the proposals within Joseph Road Precinct to date. Ultimately though the final decision in determining whether 8 Hopkins Street is fit to join those projects already approved within the precinct lies with the Minister for Planning.