Lendlease and Google sign off on $21bn USA project

Lendlease has signed a $21 billion deal with Google to develop three major areas in San Francisco in what is the developer’s largest deal to date. 

Google and Lendlease have entered into a joint agreement to undertake the masterplanning and development of three major land holdings in California’s San Francisco Bay Area.

The agreement will see the internet giant and ASX-listed Lendlease work together over the next 10 to 15 years redeveloping the global tech company’s Silicon Valley landholdings in San Jose, Sunnyvale and Mountain View into mixed-use communities.

The partnership comes after Google’s announcement of a $1 billion housing commitment for up to 15,000 homes in the Bay Area last month by its chief executive Sundar Pichai. 

The Bay Area, home to Silicon Valley and the birthplace of Google more than 20 years ago, has since seen a growing housing affordability crisis in the region.

Lendlease estimates that it will develop up to 15 million square feet of residential, retail, hospitality, and other associated community uses in the new neighbourhoods. 

While Google will focus on developing its office space within these mixed communities. 

The entire project, comprising residential, retail, and hospitality components has an estimated end development value of US$15 billion (about A$21 billion). 

Google’s Real Estate vice president David Radcliffe said development work on the project could kick off by 2021, subject to planning approval, with Lendlease playing a key role in delivering a minimum of the 15,000 new homes on the landholdings.

“[The] agreement expands on an existing and successful partnership that will help us deliver on two important objectives,” Radcliffe said.

“Our commitment to accelerate the production of residential units in the Bay Area, and our plan to build mixed-use developments.”

The “existing and successful partnership” includes the pairs working history, after bidding on a $2 billion development project on Sydney's city fringe ultimately rejected by the New South Wales government in 2016, for the redevelopment of a former industrial site in Rozelle — the White Bay Power Station. 

Lendlease US chief executive Denis Hickey said the deal, signed between the two parties in San Francisco, edges its global development pipeline close to $100 billion. 

“It's the largest deal in Lendlease’s 61-year history,” Hickey said.

“This joint agreement between Google and Lendlease will help address the need for new housing in the San Francisco Bay Area.

“We’re eager to contribute our world-class approach to creating unique urban communities.”


New report on Social housing NDIS Builder Brokers.

The Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute releases.

A national housing report, with input from a University of Tasmania academic, has concluded having a low income is rarely viewed as a necessity for the provision of social housing.

The report from the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute has said social housing was allocated on a priority needs basis which viewed homelessness and risk of homelessness as a priority factor, followed by other circumstances which required support like having a disability or escaping violence.

"In practice, this means that having a very low or low income alone is rarely a pathway into social housing," the report said.

"The need for shelter alone is rarely enough to trigger entry into social housing."

It said a lack of affordable housing alternatives put pressure on the sector due to the return of tenants who had previously left the system.

In Tasmania, a single person on a weekly wage of $552 would be eligible for social housing, as would a single adult with a child on a wage of $954 or a couple with two children on $1022 a week.

The report noted Tasmania's efforts to utilise private housing stock for people eligible for social housing such as the government's private landlord's incentive scheme and assistance for social housing tenants to purchase the homes they rent.

It said some states provided no such assistance.

The report said because there had been a shift in prioritising social housing for people with complex needs, the likelihood of households being in a position to move from the social housing sector had decreased and policies did not reflected this.

Queensland's 100,000-property public housing shortfall revealed

Queensland has a severe shortage of social and affordable housing, an issue that is projected to get worse by 2036 according to new research.

More than 102,000 additional social houses are currently needed across the state, and 54,700 affordable houses are also needed with nearly 13 per cent of Queenslanders spending more than 30 per cent of their income on rent.

Queensland has a severe shortage of social and affordable housing, an issue that is projected to get worse by 2036 according to new research.

More than 102,000 additional social houses are currently needed across the state, and 54,700 affordable houses are also needed with nearly 13 per cent of Queenslanders spending more than 30 per cent of their income on rent.



Brisbane Queesland Leading property market price increase

Queensland leading the way

Queensland is leading the way in the recovery. Brisbane has been the first capital city off the block in terms of price growth. 

Brisbane's infrastructure backlog is finally starting to move with a string of new projects, which is helping to lift the state economy and take over from the city's slowing apartment market.

“Over supply of apartments in Brisbane had the potential to derail Australia’s financial stability, however, not only did Brisbane weather the downturn very well, it is the first capital city to see positive growth in June,” Conisbee said.

The Queensland capital was up 0.1 per cent in the quarter with a median of $490,000, weathering the national downturn despite risks its over supply of apartments threatened to derail financial stability.

Sydney and Melbourne both lost 0.4 per cent in the quarter to $805,000 and $650,000 respectively.

“There is also greater positivity in the market as a result of a new airport runway and casino,” Conisbee said.

The Queensland budget, announced last month, featured almost $13 billion in capital works programs to support 40,500 jobs across Queensland, with 25,500 of these jobs in regions.

The Palaszczuk government is using the Cross River Rail to undertake redevelopment in Woolloongabba in Brisbane's south and the Roma Street transit station, which they are hoping to turn into a 17,000-seat entertainment stadium. 

The Brisbane City Council's $944 million Metro project will also link with the Cross River Rail.

“While there is a clear affordability edge in South-East Queensland compared to Sydney, it is jobs that is making the move possible,” Conisbee said.

“The upswing is also extending to regional areas, with Mackay seeing the strongest price growth of any region in Australia over the past 12 months, and many smaller mining towns are roaring ahead.

“The other more unique factor about Brisbane is that we are seeing some big jumps in offshore property seekers,” Conisbee said.

“Chinese buyers are gone but property seekers from India have more than doubled over the past 12 months, perhaps suggesting that Indian born buyers may begin to have as big an influence on house and land sales as they have had in Melbourne and Sydney.”



Developer Villa World Enters $293m Takeover Deal

Property developer Villa World has entered into a binding agreement with Avid Property Group in a $293.6 million takeover deal. 

Under the scheme, ASX-listed Villa World agreed to $2.3451 cash per share.

Independent chair of Villa World Mark Jewell said once the scheme is implemented shareholders will receive a cash payment at a “meaningful premium to the trading price of Villa World shares prior to the announcement of the initial Avid proposal”.

The price is 17.8 per cent premium to Villa World’s closing share price of $1.99 as of 14 March, the last closing price of Villa World shares when Avid initially approached the group.

Avid has a $3 billion portfolio of broad acre and medium-density, residential and industrial projects, and is owned by a number of international institutional investors, whose investment is managed and advised by Proprium Capital Partners, a fund manager headquartered in the United States. 

Avid chief executive Cameron Holt said the acquisition strategically combined two strong performing and complementary businesses.

“Leveraging the talent, expertise and systems of both businesses will create a stronger, better platform from which to grow,” Holt said.

Avid expects to fund the cash consideration from internal resources, equity contributions and debt facilities, with the scheme not conditional on Avid securing funds.

The implementation of the scheme is still subject to conditions, including the approval of Villa World shareholders.

The scheme also carries a break fee of approximately $3 million, payable by Villa World to Avid. 

Subject to shareholder approval and the conditions being satisfied, the scheme is expected to be implemented in late October-early November.

Villa World's board is being advised by Macquarie Capital as financial adviser and Allens as legal adviser.

Tenant Demand for Brisbane Apartments Strengthens

Brisbane's apartment vacancy rate fell to just 1.6 per cent in March, driven lower by a slowing decline in supply and continued population growth. 

Brisbane's vacancy rate tightened by 0.6 per cent from the previous quarter according to a new report by property consultants Urbis.

Comparatively, the Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ) recorded a vacancy rate of 2.1 per cent for the total inner Brisbane rental market over the same period, down 4 per cent from the previous quarter.

The figures from Urbis quarterly Inner Brisbane Apartment Rental Review highlights a market in transition, with many in the residential sector continuing to shift focus from investors to owner-occupiers.

Brisbane's premium market is also seeing a flurry of activity, however Riga warned of risks for buyers in this market generally take longer to transact. 

“This market of premium buyers is expected to sustain growth moving forward as our Brisbane market matures, and acceptance of the apartment lifestyle spreads across multiple demographics,” he said. 

“Ultimately it comes down to ensuring that each development aligns the potential buyer market with the pricing and inclusions that they expect.”

Predictably, a significant portion of buyers spending $2 million-plus on apartments continue to be down-sizers, swapping the family home for a large inner-city apartment.

At the lower end of the market one-bedroom apartments have continued to remain popular with inner Brisbane renters.

Urbis found that one-bedroom, one-car space apartments had the highest average number of rental applications per apartment with the inner south and CBD recording higher rents on average.

Hopes are growing for the apartment market in the Queensland capital. A separate report by JLL earlier this year said Brisbane apartment prices and rents would stabilise over the next 12 months.

For now, conditions in Brisbane, the apartment construction market that was first to boom and also the first to decline, remain weak.

Michael Shekell


Builder Brokers 1800 1 BUILD


Who Will Build the 730,000 New Social Dwellings Australia Needs?

Research from the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI) consistently shows that regardless of which funding or financing model is used to provide social housing, there is a gap between what it costs to build and manage social housing and the amount low-income tenants can afford to pay to live in it.

While rent subsidies and assistance help many low-income tenants, they do not impact the overall lack of supply of housing. Addressing this deficit will call for the construction of some 730,000 new social dwellings across Australia over the next 20 years.

“There is genuine need for large-scale investment in affordable housing to deliver the supply required into the future,” AHURI executive director Dr Michael Fotheringham said.

“There are key roles to play for developers, financiers and planners, as well as community housing providers and government.”

The National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation (NHFIC) launched in 2018 to provide loans, grants and investments that complement, leverage and support commonwealth, state and territory activities related to the creation of housing. 

At this year’s National Housing Conference — the largest gathering of those working with social and affordable housing — a panel will revisit the NHFIC one year on: is it the silver bullet to financing affordable housing or is it just one piece of a yet to be completed financing and funding puzzle?

“Absolutely lower cost debt plays a key part in the delivery of new supply of affordable housing,” Hume Community Housing chief executive Nicola Lemon said.

Hume Community Housing is the first organisation to be approved for a NHFIC loan.

“Our partnership with NHFIC and its investors has already delivered great outcomes, but it is not the end game. 

“The end game is that affordable housing is fully established as a pure standalone asset class, that attracts capital and institutional investment that can provide yield returns aligned with that of infrastructure investments. 

“There is no silver bullet and for this to occur a range of subsidy, tax and policy settings need to be reconsidered at all levels of government.

“The CHP sector is ready to work with investors, developers and governments to ensure the settings are right to deliver much needed social and affordable homes now and in to the future.”

The CEO of NHFIC will be joined by ANZ, who helped finance the first bond, Hume Housing and another community housing provider who have received loans through NHFIC’s first funding round to develop much-needed affordable housing.

Cross-sectoral communications and partnerships have been heralded as the key to success in such projects.

A dynamic line up will come together for the National Housing Conference’s major session Dollars to Dwellings: Financing affordable housing. 

Read more and view the full program here.

Mirvac Set to Launch 124 Home Everton Park Project

Mirvac will kick off construction on its Everton Park project later this year, the development will feature 124 residences including a mix of homes and townhouses located seven kilometres from Brisbane CBD.

The development approval, granted by Brisbane City council, comes after community pushback and an appeal made against the project. Mirvac has since reduced the 139-lot estate to 124-lots and removed all three-storey townhouses, putting a two storey height limit in place.

Masterplan changes also include a change to the minimum lot size, increased to 400sq m, with the 300sq m lot sizes removed.

Construction of the six hectare site is expected to commence in late 2019.

Builderbrokes18001buildmirvac124new homesevertonparkbrisbaneqld.jpg

10,000 Land lots purchased at the Sunshine Coast

Private developer Capital Property Group has snapped up a 50 per cent interest in Stockland’s largest masterplanned community, a 20,000 lot estate located on the Sunshine Coast.

Stockland says the major project has an end value of $5 billion, with the deal struck with billionaire Terry Snow's CPG, representing a 30 per cent premium to book value. 

Stockland chief executive Mark Steinert said the move was in line with its strategy to bring capital partners to invest with Stockland in delivering large scale projects.

“This is a long term investment given the life of the project,” Steinert said. 

The Sunshine Coast estate, comprising 20,000 lots, is forecast to become home to 50,000 people over the next 20-to-30 years.

“Aura is one of the largest masterplanned communities in Australia… [CPG] will invest alongside us to continue the creation of an outstanding new city on the Sunshine Coast, combining affordable homes, retail town centres and business parks,” Steinert said.

Terry Snow's Capital Property Group developed and owns the Canberra Airport. It also has a mixed-use project, Constitution Place, underway in Canberra’s CBD. 

Snow joined the billionaire club in 2017, largely thanks to his smart investments, chiefly the Canberra airport, which he purchased in 1998 with a 99-year lease from the Federal government for $65 million.

And with the Sunshine Coast’s international airport development under way, Snow describes the Sunshine coast region as “an exciting growth area” in Australia. 

“It will drive growth in the many industries that are expanding on the coast,” he said. 

“When you couple that with the climate and the scale of Stockland’s vision, this is a long-term project that we are very excited to support.”

Stockland will continue to manage the development and delivery of the Aura estate, including the delivery of infrastructure to be rolled out under existing agreements with local and state government.

Steinert said partnerships like this would strengthen its balance sheet, and free up capital to invest in other counter-cyclical deals.

“Including our workplace and logistics development pipeline and additional residential community acquisitions,” he said.

While profit related to this transaction will be recognised in financial year 2020, the ASX-listed company is scheduled to release its full year results in August.

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‘Tide turning’ as prices in Sydney and Melbourne lift

Sydney and Melbourne markets have reported a monthly home value increase for the first time since prices peaked in 2017, according to new data from CoreLogic.

CoreLogic’s latest Hedonic Home Value Index has revealed that in June, dwelling values increased in both Sydney and Melbourne, rising by 0.1 per cent and 0.2 per cent, respectively.  

The results have marked the first monthly increase in Sydney since July 2017 and the first increase in Melbourne since November 2017.

Hobart was the only other capital city to report an increase in dwelling values (0.2 per cent), with prices falling in Canberra (0.9 per cent), Darwin (0.9 per cent), Perth (0.7 per cent), Brisbane (0.6 per cent) and Adelaide (0.5 per cent).

“The improvement in housing market conditions over the first five months of the year has largely been organic; however, since mid-May there has been a raft of announcements that should provide a further positive flow-through to housing demand,” he said.

Stability within the federal government, along with the removal of uncertainty surrounding changes to negative gearing and capital gains tax discounts, has brought about increased certainty and boosted confidence in the housing market.”

Mr Lawless also noted the improvement in housing affordability, which he said could be supported by proposed changes to mortgage serviceability assessment guidelines and lower home loan rates.

However, the analyst acknowledged that dwelling values “remain high relative to household incomes in Sydney and Melbourne”, and said that an improvement in demand for housing credit would be offset by continued scrutiny of income and living expenses, which he described as the “new normal”.

“Overall, it looks like the tide may have turned for the housing market; however, we aren’t expecting a rapid recovery phase,” he said.

Brisbane Gets Four New Apartment Projects

As the Brisbane apartment market continues to show signs of improvement, developers are shifting their focus to boutique projects which appeal to the local owner-occupier market.

The signs in the Brisbane apartment market have been more optimistic of late, with Corelogic-Moody's Analytics recent home value index forecasting Brisbane's apartment values to recover in 2020 after a tough few years following the construction glut between 2013 and 2016.

It also seems that the limited new projects launched in the last two years have created vacancy that will continue to tighten as supply drives up.

And no where is supply more in demand than in Brisbane’s cafe culture hubs of New Farm and West End. Nestled in some of Brisbane’s premiere shopping and dining hubs, they epitomise a the ideal fringe CBD locations, surrounded by a constantly evolving cityscape of eateries, boutiques and essential amenities. 

New Farm, one of Brisbane’s best performing suburbs over the past decade, growing by 76.2 per cent in that time, offering sought out lifestyle attributes like bars, restaurants, breweries and high-end fashion stores.

Brisbane’s West End has been hive of development activity of late. Supply of new apartments in West End peaked in 2017, with close to 900 apartments delivered that year. This has steadily decreased with about 200 apartments due to be completed this calendar year.

Here are four notable low-rise medium-density residential projects — flagged by DA tool CityShape — that have recently entered planning assessment across Brisbane.

Anthology by QM Properties

155 Moray Street, New Farm

The Maison by Frank Developments and Graya

60 Moray Street, New Farm

The Oxlade by Seymour Group

80 Oxlade Drive, New Farm

Amersham by Di Marco Group and TG Development

8-10 Amersham Street, West End


23,000 new homes and one million square metres of commercial & retail.

New building heights and increased communal space are the latest updates incorporated into an inner city precinct spanning an area half the size of Brisbane’s CBD.

Pegged as a priority development area by state government, the planning scheme provides for the long-term growth of around 23,000 new homes and one million square metres of commercial, retail and industrial floor space in Bowen Hills.

Under the revised development scheme, new residential developments will now provide 10 per cent of floor area with three or more bedroom dwellings, in a move to accommodate the growing number of families living in apartments. 

State development minister Cameron Dick said the scheme responds to “trends in the Australian property market”. 

“Providing choice for families who want to live close to jobs and public services including the new Fortitude Valley State Secondary College,” he said.

“ABS data shows up to 15.5 per cent of apartment dwellers are families with one or more children in the greater Brisbane area.”

New developments in the PDA will also be required to achieve best practice sustainability accreditation, Dick outlined. 

“Communal spaces up to 80 per cent of a new development’s site area will also be a requirement for all new residential development applications within the PDA so that residents have ready access to quality facilities and outdoor areas within their own buildings.”

Landmarks within the PDA, located three kilometres from Brisbane CBD, include the Brisbane Showgrounds, the Old Museum, Perry Park, Bowen Park, the Exhibition Railway Station, and the Bowen Hills Railway Station.

The original development scheme, now 10 years old was also updated to reflect new building heights in precincts with existing approvals, while new walkways, cycleways and parks are incorporated.

Public spaces will be coupled with retail high streets, ground-level businesses and “a lively entertainment district” for residents and visitors. 

Spanning 108 hectares of land in Brisbane’s inner-northern suburb, the priority development area is boarded by Bowen Bridge Road and Enoggera Creek to the west, Mayne Rail Yards and Breakfast Creek to the north, Water Street and St Pauls Terrace to the south, Breakfast Creek, Cintra Road and Markwell Street to the east.

Brisbane Developer Unveils $130m Logan Project

A new $130 million residential project on Brisbane’s south-side kicked off construction this week by private developer Golden Gate Property. 

Golden Gate has appointed construction company Shadforth to undertake civil works at the 600-lot project, which spans more than 50 hectares.

The developer secured the site, at 94-180 Park Ridge road, for more than $30 million earlier this year. The development project, known as Carver's Reach, sits 32 kilometres from Brisbane’s CBD in the suburb of Park Ridge.

The major site was created through the amalgamation of nine separate sites on Park Ridge Road which sits in the Logan City Council government area. 

Considered a major southern growth corridor, state government said it will be pushing ahead with more than $1 billion investment in fixing traffic bottlenecks on the M1, Mount Lindesay Highway and Ipswich Motorway corridors. 

Golden Gate Property, led by Marc Clancy, Terence So and David Whiteman, have a number of infill projects on the go including Regency Green, a 97-lot development project also in Park Ridge. 

“It’s a true, multi-stage masterplanned community where we have the scope to be creative in terms of the open space and connectivity with the local community,” Whiteman said of the latest project. 

The project marks the team's largest development project to date. 

Related: Brisbane Property Group Secures Three Infill Sites

Property services group Oliver Hume is at the sales helm for the project. Chief operating officer Julian Coppini said the group had noticed a “strong surge” in the level of enquiries for projects since the federal election. 

“Some of our projects have experienced a 40 per cent increase since the election and while it is a bit early to say if the increased enquiry will convert into sales, there is reason to be optimistic.”

The first homes of the Carver’s Reach project are expected to settle in early 2020 with its first residents due to move in mid-next-year.

The first stage, the Jarrah Release, includes 67 homesites ranging in size from 313sq m to 808sq m with prices starting from $203,000.

Diversified property group CFMG Capital announced it acquired a 4.9 hectare site in Park Ridge for just over $5 million last week. The site, which has development approval, will deliver 89 lots.



Google Announces $1bn Housing Plan USA

Google has announced it will invest $1 billion toward the development of 15,000 new homes in the San Francisco Bay Area with the aim of tackling its housing shortage and affordability crisis in the area... that it kind of helped create. 

Google’s chief executive Sundar Pichai made the announcement this week, as the tech giant plans to roll out the billion-dollar pledge back where it all began, the Bay Area. 

Starting out there more than 20 years ago, Google is one of the Bay Area’s largest employers. And one of the region’s standout issues today is housing.

The rise of tech hubs, such as Silicon Valley, is why many believe the area is home to some of the world’s most expensive real estate. 

“The lack of new supply, combined with the rising cost of living, has seen a severe shortage of affordable housing options for long-time middle and low-income residents,” Pichai said.

“Solving a big issue like the housing shortage will take collaboration across business, government and community organisations, and we look forward to working alongside others to make the Bay Area a place where everyone who lives here can thrive.”

The billion dollar roll-out

Over the next 10 years Pichai said Google will repurpose $750 million of its land to residential, most of which is currently zoned for office and commercial space.

“This will enable us to support the development of at least 15,000 new homes at all income levels in the Bay Area, including housing options for middle and low-income families.”

To give context, Pichai said only 3000 homes were built in the South Bay last year.

The second part of the tech giant’s plans, Google will establish a $250 million investment fund for developers. 

“So that we can provide incentives to enable developers to build at least 5,000 affordable housing units across the market,” Pichai said.

“We will (also) give $50 million in grants through Google.org to nonprofits focused on the issues of homelessness and displacement.”

The Google chief executive said the company will continue to work with local municipalities in the coming months to support residential developers.

“Our goal is to get housing construction started immediately, and for homes to be available in the next few years. 

“In Mountain View, we’ve already worked with the city to change zoning in the North Bayshore area to free up land for housing, and we’re currently in productive conversations with Sunnyvale and San Jose.”


New $1.3 Gold Coast Development

Ranging in height between 10 and 12-storeys, the four towers will offer one, two and three-bedroom apartments overlooking the newly-named “Lake Unity” and ground level retail.

Each building captures lakefront, city skyline and hinterland views.

ASX-listed developer Sunland has lodged revised plans for four residential towers at its $1.3 billion masterplan on the Gold Coast.

The 42-hectare former dairy farm is set to be redeveloped into an urban village — “The Lanes” — delivering 17,000sq m of new retail space, a boulevard, outdoor amphitheatre and four residential towers.

The revised scheme removes plans for four permit-approved commercial buildings and increases the number of apartments from 298 to 310. Sunland initially lodged an application for the project in late 2018. 

The end value of the four residential towers is $231 million.

The developer has appointed ex-Zaha Hadid designer Contreras Earl to design the four mid-rise towers, which are strikingly similar to the built form of its “champagne flute” skyscrapers in Brisbane.

“The [towers] represent a sculptural design language which takes its inspiration from the patterns and geometry found in various plant life,” Sunland managing director Sahba Abedian told The Urban Developer

“This is where any similarity to our previous design concepts ends.”

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Ripley Town Centre - New city -$1.5bn Plans for Ripley Town Centre

Japanese-backed developer Sekisui House has revealed its $1.5 billion masterplan vision for Ripley Town Centre in heart of Brisbane’s rapidly growing western corridor.

Ripley Valley, declared a priority development area in October 2010, covers a total area of 4,680ha southwest of the Ipswich CBD.

Sekisui's 40ha masterplan for Ripley Town Centre, the only designated major retail and commercial hub earmarked for the Ripley Valley region, will pre-empt projected growth of the region — approximately 133,000 new residents by 2036.

Tokyo-listed Sekisui House, which is known for its Sydney CBD Central Park mixed-use project with Frasers Property and West Village project in Brisbane's West End, is one of Japan’s largest homebuilders with total projects within Australia valued at over $18 billion.


Brisbane house price hits new record high: What‘s your home now worth?

JUST when you thought the housing market was going backwards, new figures reveal Brisbane house prices have hit a new record high.

The latest Real Estate Institute of Queensland Market Monitor, released today, shows the annual median house price within the city’s local government area rose 1.5 per cent in the 12 months to the end of March to reach a new high of $680,000.

The Brisbane LGA median house price has jumped 27.3 per cent since December 2013, when it was $535,000.

The top suburb for house price growth in the Brisbane local government area over the 12 month period was Auchenflower in the city’s inner west, which recorded a whopping 23 per cent increase in its median house price.

Northgate, Gordon Park, Hamilton and Clayfield in the inner north also experienced strong house price growth of between 11 per cent and 13.3 per cent.

Elizabeth Tilley


Brisbane Land Sub-division development purchase

Diversified property group CFMG Capital has purchased three parcels of land across Queensland and Victoria as it builds its development pipeline across the two states. 

The acquisition, with plans to deliver up to 200 lots, are located in the Brisbane and Logan suburbs of Rochedale and Park Ridge, and Wollert in Melbourne's north. 

CFMG Capital general manager Andrew Thomson said the three sites, secured for more than $15 million, offered proximity to infrastructure and services, and buyer demand for quality affordable projects in key growth corridors.

“It can be a challenge finding quality land close to metropolitan centres so these acquisitions are a huge boost for property buyers in both the south-east Queensland and Melbourne markets,” Thomson said.

Related: Developers, Government and Council Ink $1.2bn Infrastructure Deal

The acquisitions add to a CFMG’s portfolio that includes Lomandra Park at Bridgeman Downs, Elevate at Ormeau Hills, Creeks Edge and Oakland Pocket at Morayfield, Middleton Park at Logan Reserve and Solander at Park Ridge.

The Park Ridge site, snapped up for more than $5 million, spans 4.94 hectares and has development approval that will see 89 lots. 

The property investment company will develop 15 lots with an average size of 439sq metres in Rochedale, located 17-kilometres from Brisbane’s CBD, after acquiring 1.33 hectares of land for $3.375 million.

CFMG has also lodged a development application for 83 lots at Epping Rd in Wollert, a suburb popular with older couples and independents located 26 kilometres from Melbourne CBD, which will be known as Acacia Village, securing the 5.86-hectare site for $6.8 million.

“The future of transport is coming to Melbourne and we’re ready to make it happen,” Victorian treasurer Tim Pallas said on Wednesday.

In less than five years, Melburnians will be able to book and share a 10-minute trip from the CBD to Melbourne airport courtesy of Uber Air’s flying car fleet. 

The ridesharing giant has announced that Melbourne has been selected as the third official pilot city, joining Dallas and Los Angeles as test cities for the Uber Air program.

The prototype — not quite a helicopter or a plane — is set to become a familiar site in Melbourne from next year as the company launches test flights from next year ahead of commercial operations from 2023. 

Uber cited the Victorian government’s forward-looking approach and Australia’s “wholehearted” embrace of the ridesharing app as reasons for its choice. Melbourne was chosen over shortlisted cities Paris, Sao Paolo, Mumbai, Tokyo and Sydney after an 18-month selection process.

While it all sounds a little futuristic, Uber’s plans are concrete: the company has announced partnerships with Macquarie, Telstra, Scentre Group and the Melbourne Airport to fast track the infrastructure and aviation network required to run Uber Air.

“The future of transport is coming to Melbourne and we’re ready to make it happen,” Victorian treasurer Tim Pallas said on Wednesday.