As the Gold Coast and Brisbane continue to prepare for next year’s Commonwealth Games, DMA Partners Associate Rob Christmas brings some insight from his experience as Project Leader reporting to the CEO of Queensland Events Limited during the Games’ feasibility stage.
Rob said as Director-Real Estate Advisory at PwC, he was engaged to provide strategic property analyses and economic advice to the CEO of Queensland Events Limited.
DMA Partners’ Project Managers definitely have each other’s backs. So when a scheduling conflict ruled out Leigh McQuade from participating in the 100km Oxfam Trailwalker charity event, our always keen James Hood pulled on his walking boots and stepped up to the challenge with only a few weeks to prepare.
Joining the ‘Holy Walkamolies’ team of four, James walked through Friday, Friday night and most of Saturday to complete the 100km walk, and successfully raised $5,000 for the fight against poverty.
Brisbane, as predicted, has started to see a turn toward commercial developments with DAs lodged for proposed office buildings on Albert Street, in Fortitude Valley, and Upper Mount Gravatt.
Of note, the Albert Street DA will see the demolition of the existing Suncorp Plaza tower. Well known for the clock that sits atop the building and its unique north-south orientation that places it on an angle to the city grid, the structure is less known for being Brisbane’s first high rise, and at the time the only structural steel framed high rise building in the city.
The recent sale of Toowoomba’s Highfields Village Shopping Centre to Charter Hall marked a significant milestone for the property owners Lauder Pty Ltd, but also for DMA Partners, with Managing Director Ryan Andersen recalling a long and meaningful history with Highfields owners the Stirling Family
Charter Hall Retail REIT bought the property in suburban Highfields, 8km north of the Toowoomba CBD, for $41 million dollars reflecting a capitalisation rate of six per cent.
While most Australian retailers likely shudder at the thought of the international online shopping tsunami hitting our shores, the mass market food and beverage retailers may have the likes of Amazon to thank for their soaring popularity in retail centres, according to DMA Partners’ Associate Angus Jarmer.
A former architect, Angus said, “Major retail centre owners, such as Westfield and QIC, have long recognised the pulling power of food and beverage operators but these days they are taking it to an entirely new level.
When new luxury hotel THE CALILE opens in Fortitude Valley’s James Street in mid-2018, the DMA Partners’ team will be raising our glasses to the newest landmark in the iconic urban lifestyle precinct. And, it’s highly likely that we will be celebrating around one of the pool-side cabanas which will sit high above street level within the “urban oasis”.
Located at the intersection of Wandoo, Doggett and James Streets, THE CALILE will be seven storeys of luxury, with 178 hotel rooms and suites, a function centre, day spa, fitness club and business centre. At street level, there will be more than 1750 square metres of retail and restaurant space, further adding to the appeal of the renowned James Street Precinct.
As Australia’s approach to retirement living moves from the segregation model, ie the old ‘stand-alone’ nursing home, to a more integrated, community-based model, operators and developers would be well placed to look to the retail and commercial sectors for lessons in connectivity and even profitability, according to PDT Architects Director Laurence Taylor.
Laurence suggests that the commercially-driven mixed-use model of inner-urban retail and CBD commercial property may provide a solution to some challenges currently facing retirement developers.
The mammoth Brisbane CBD Queens Wharf development may have been the stand out development application for the last month of the financial year but it was the surge in DAs for the middle ring suburbs that will have city administrators concerned about future infrastructure provision.
In June alone, almost 700 development applications were lodged with the Brisbane City Council alone and most of these for sites within the middle ring. While DA activity did signal intent around some major projects, the 4107 postcode of Cannon Hill, Colmslie, Morningside Norman Park and Seven Hills was the centre of action for new dwellings, extensions and land subdivision.