Developer Resubmits Dual-Tower Parramatta Plans


Chinese-backed developer Shanghai Lihua Australia has resubmitted plans to develop a dual-tower residential development in Homebush, 12.5km west of the Sydney CBD.

The development application for the 3.5ha at 12-14 Birnie Avenue was originally submitted to the City of Parramatta late in 2019.

The SJB-designed apartment project, in the emerging Carter Street development precinct next to the Sydney Olympic Park, will feature two 27-storey towers offering 10,800sq m of gross floor area.

The development, which will take up 1.1ha of the super site, will comprise 420 apartments above four levels of basement car parking. It will also involve the construction of a new road and public domain works.

Residents will have access to a rooftop recreation deck on each tower with gardens as well as a communal garden to be located on the fifth level of each building.

Shanghai Lihua Australia currently holds a pipeline of $100 million in new projects nationally and have completed the Kings Cross Centre, 215-231 Kingsgrove Road in Kingsgrove and the Hurstville retail arcade at 124 Forest Road.

12-14 Birnie Avenue, Homebush, NSW 2140
▲ Shanghai Lihua Australia picked up the site, currently occupied by a 4000sq m cold storage warehouse, in August 2017. Image: Nearmap

It has earmarked the remaining 2.4ha of the site for a 20,700sq m commercial development which will launch at the completion of the residential project.

If approved, Shanghai Lihua Australia aims to commence construction towards the end of the year and has an anticipated completion date for mid-2023.

Parramatta, often referred to as Sydney’s second CBD, has been tipped to emerge as a bright spot at the end of the coronavirus pandemic.

The western Sydney hub has been singled out as a key part of the future development of Sydney under plans unveiled in 2016 by the Greater Sydney Commission.

Adding impetus to its status as an emerging office market is the planned Western Sydney Metro rail line that will connect it to the Sydney central business district via a 20-minute train ride.

Central to the region's transformation has been Parramatta Square, a $2.8-billion project with four towers, which the Walker Corporation broke ground on in 2017.

A big boost to residential and commercial development is also expected to come from two separate federal and state government requirements for a total of about 70,000sq m of office space.

They are yet to formally issue a brief to the market.

EG buys neighbouring site in industrial play

Real estate fund manager EG has picked up two commercial office buildings at a neighbouring site in Sydney Olympic Park.

EG paid $66.1 million, on a net passing yield of 7.2 per cent, for the 1.4ha estate at 6 Parkview Drive and 102 Bennelong Parkway.

The property was acquired for EG’s Australian Core Enhanced Fund, which targets investments in the office, retail and industrial sector offering higher returns through repositioning assets.

The site currently offers 9992sq m of office accommodation and 283 car bays.

EG’s ACE fund was launched in June 2019 with the ability to invest more than $800 million.

In August, the ACE fund acquired a multi-tenanted industrial facility in Ingleburn in Western Sydney for $38.2 million.

In September last year, EG secured a new investment mandate from Singaporean sovereign wealth fund GIC to invest up to $400 million in income-producing real estate near new or upgraded transport infrastructure.

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