John Thistleton July 30, 2012
Developers of a $120 million apartments project in the new Molonglo suburb of Wright are undaunted by the territory's large supply of apartments.
GEOCON development manager Michael Andrew says the market can absorb one of the new suburb's biggest apartment projects, 'Observatory Living' comprising 212 one, two and three bedroom apartments, priced from $319,000.
"I don't think there are too many," Mr Andrew said.
"It's the price brackets that Canberra has, when you put apartments into price brackets.
"Some of the higher end of the market are finding it harder to sell that product, whereas what we are aiming at is the affordable apartments."
GEOCON operates a hotel at Gungahlin and is completing $93 million worth of apartments, 82-room hotel and commercial space at Greenway, Tuggeranong.
While planning and lease conditions stipulate 30 cent of the development at Wright must be affordable housing Mr Andrew says GEOCON will aim for 40 per cent of affordable homes.
The target market will include single seniors, with large, one-bedroom and study apartments with plenty of space in bathrooms and kitchen.
Apartments will have lift access and seven-star energy rating.
GEOCON says the development will create more than 200 jobs and as much as $300 million of additional activity in the ACT economy, based on industry calculations.
"There's no doubt it is not a terrific time to be starting large projects, however we are confident of getting sufficient pre-sales, to be able to start," Mr Andrew said.
"We are waiting on the Land Development Agency to hand over Wright stage two (to ACT Planning and Land Authority) in September. We will then have title of the land.
"We're beginning sales earlier."
Those sales will determine timing of the project, with construction to start some time in 2013 and should be completed by the end of 2014.
Apartments will overlook the Molonglo River, Stromlo Forest and have views to Black Mountain, the Parliamentary Triangle and National Arboretum.