This article was first published by MAGGIE LU YUEYANG on September 2, 2016 via theaustralian.com.au | Image: Blueprint for new Arden precinct – Source: afr.com.au
The Victorian government has unveiled a $7 billion plan to revive the Arden precinct in North Melbourne over 30 years, boosting housing supply around the new Arden metro station in an area currently in industrial use.
The 56ha between Macaulay Road, Dryburgh Street and the Upfield rail line, will be developed into a new commercial and residential precinct to house up to 15,000 people, according to the state government’s draft plans released yesterday.
“Melbourne is growing rapidly. We’re expanding the city to meet demand for new housing and create new jobs,” Minister for Planning Richard Wynne said.
The precinct will be developed around the new underground railway station next to the Arden Street football ground, only one stop away from Parkville, the CBD and Melbourne’s flourishing west.
“No other state government has a parcel of land held in public ownership on the doorstep of the city that’s got such opportunities for development with a major urban public transport link underneath it,” Mr Wynne said.
The change to commercial and residential will see Arden developing “city centre-style living spaces in proximity to workplaces and services” and mixed housing types, the government says. The area, with potential for multistorey apartments close to the CBD, will be the next Melbourne hot spot for developers.
“North Melbourne is a fantastic little pocket there with so many strong underlying fundamentals,” said Daniel Caspar, director of Revel Development Group, noting that future developments would benefit from upgraded infrastructure.
Revel is currently developing the Reflections Apartments on the edge of the Arden precinct, at 108 Haines Street.
“We purchased the site there obviously because we knew the potential growth in the area,” Mr Caspar said. “We would certainly look to purchase more sites.”
Leonard Teplin, director of Marshall White Projects, said infrastructure investment in the area was “long overdue” and residential development should give North Melbourne a substantial facelift.
“Melbourne is now complete. It (North Melbourne) is the last bit of the puzzle that hasn’t come with infrastructure investment,” he said.
Mr Teplin said the government should take a co-ordinated approach to the Arden redevelopment to create connection with pedestrians, taking lessons from previous urban renewals such as Dockland and Fishermans Bend.