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Site sales soar as developers hone in on evolving Doncaster market

Site sales are soaring in Doncaster as developer appetite for residential projects in this maturing market increases, according to Colliers International.

Peter Bremner, Colliers International National Director of Investment Sales, has sold approximately $140million worth of sites in Doncaster over the past 12 months amidst increased Asian buyer interest in the precinct.

“There is a definite theme emerging, with the last three site sales in Doncaster all being to Singaporean purchasers,” Mr Bremner said.

Colliers International recently sold 642-654 Doncaster Road – a property with a permit for 273 apartments and 2,000sq m of commercial development – for in excess of $13million to a private Singaporean buyer.

Prior to this, Mr Bremner sold the 2.8ha former Morrison Nursery site in Doncaster for $19.28million to CEL from Singapore, who propose more than 100 townhouses plus 50 apartments, and late last year he sold 1 Grosvenor Street to Ho Bee of Singapore for $8.5million. Ho Bee are taking advantage of the existing permit for 185 apartments and recently commenced pre-sales on a project called Pearl.

Another recent highlight in the Doncaster market was Colliers International’s sale of the Eastern Golf Course for circa $100million to Mirvac, which went unconditional in May last year.

“Doncaster Hill is evolving rapidly, with new and improved community and shopping facilities and forward-looking local planning strategies,” Mr Bremner said.

“The recent major refurbishment of Westfield Doncaster has provided a modern ‘super regional’ shopping centre at the doorstep, and the local council, the City of Manningham, has shown its support for high rise apartment projects and activity centre zonings allowing up to 11 levels in certain precincts.

“The Doncaster Hill precinct is now a mature apartment market with several recently completed 10 to 11 level apartment projects including The Pinnacle, The Madison and Haven. Also full steam ahead is the latest apartment building under construction in Sovereign Point Court, being developed by the locally based but Chinese-backed AXF Group.

Presently, three apartment projects are selling off-the-plan, including Panorama at 101 Tram Road, 88 Doncaster Hill at 88 Tram Road, and Pearl at 1 Grosvenor Street.

“Apartment sales rates have edged just over $8,000/sq m for upper floors, especially if they have views of the CBD or Dandenongs,” Mr Bremner said.

“There are currently at least another dozen sites with permits on Doncaster Hill, some of which will be developed by the current owners and some of which will be sold. The chances of these sites being snapped up by buyers from Singapore, China or Malaysia, who work on different profit margins in their feasibilities than local developers, is high.

"Colliers International is working with several offshore groups who have missed out on these recently sold sites and still want to purchase a site in Doncaster.”

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