A $450 million development application “inspired” by The Grove shopping centre in Los Angeles has been lodged by project managers State Development Corporation and advisory firm White and Partners.
The 8,982sq m site comprises an open-air five-storey plaza, including a theatre, with a 20-storey office tower and 25-storey residential tower on the corner block at 23-51 High Street, 74 Jephson Street and 26-30 Sherwood Road, Toowong..
This application follows the listing of an adjoining five-storey office tower for $30 million in February to help fund the development.
The site is currently anchored by one of the first Woolworths opened in Queensland and sits opposite the train station and Toowong Village built in the mid-1980s.
The Grove in Los Angeles was also planned in the late 1980s but finally opened in 2002 by privately-owned American real estate investor Caruso.
The open-air retail and entertainment precinct featured cobblestone walkways, an art-deco inspired cinema, a water fountain and trolley.
State Development Corporation and advisory firm White & Partners aim create a new “heart” of Toowong by 2023 and work with existing businesses.
“Toowong Village is a successful and well-managed centre and we are not trying to compete with this,” State Development Corporation managing director Ross McKinnon said.
“Most of the 150 metre frontage to High Street has been a blank concrete wall for more than 60 years.
“We now have the chance to create a whole new image for High Street and Sherwood Road.
“Inspiration for the design has come from The Grove shopping centre in Los Angeles which incorporates the best characteristics of a high street in the one development.
“Brisbane has a similar climate to Los Angeles, and we believe the open street theme along with the open-air plaza is the perfect combination to enhance the existing Toowong area.”
Toowong Town Centre is designed by architects Nettletontribe , and features a plaza at ground level with 50 per cent public space and water feature which could be converted into a stage.
The developers “deliberately decided” not to go ahead with council-approved plans from 2018 submitted by previous owners Stockland.
Stockland submitted a successful application for three towers up to 25-storeys with 533 apartments, restaurant precinct, village green and laneway.
“We have developed four projects in the western corridor and understand the Toowong area very well.
“We’re creating a completely different offer and an entirely new streetscape for Toowong,” McKinnon said.