Flood follows approvals drought

By Laurence Dragomir

While I've been gallivanting around Europe, a number of large-scale proposals within the city have had their fates decided by the Planning Minister.

This is in stark contrast to last month's column which focused on the status of a number of projects which were sitting in planning limbo.

The first cabs off the rank were the formal approval of 447 Collins St (dubbed the “pantscraper”), 280 Queens St and Collins House.

These were soon followed by the approval of Zaha Hadid's first Melbourne project at 600 Collins St in collaboration with Plus Architecture.

447 Collins St's approval paves the way for the project to start in September. The 42-level, twin-tower, mixed-use project, known now as Collins Arch, will be worth $1.25 billion upon completion and has already secured a tenant for the office space with another soon to sign on. Collins Arch also features hotel rooms and apartments which are soon to be released to the market.

Developer Brady has received approval for a $150 million, 68-level building at 280 Queen St with 533 units, a gym, spa and cinema.

This is the third iteration for the site following approval of an office tower, then a mixed-use scheme. The project's podium was reduced in height before being approved.

Collins House at 460 Collins St received a planning amendment approval for a $100 million, pencil thin, 61-storey tower by Golden Age featuring 172 units comprising a mix of one, two, three and four bedrooms. Employing modular construction, the tower is expected to rise in near record time.

And Melbourne will now soon be home to a Zaha Hadid-designed building with the 54-storey mixed-use building gaining approval at a height of 176m following a reduction in height of 10m.

The project by developer Landream, resembles four stacked vases and will accommodate 420 dwellings and office space in addition to a public plaza, gallery, retail and a new laneway at ground level.

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