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Construction powerhouse lands Melbourne student housing project

Construction powerhouse lands Melbourne student housing project

Brookfield Asset Management (Brookfield) has appointed Multiplex to deliver its first-ever student housing project in Australia.

The development, a joint venture with Citiplan and Journal Student Living, will be located in Carlton, opposite the University of Melbourne’s Parkville campus on an amalgamated block on the corner of Bouverie and Grattan Streets. Its proximity to key landmarks such as the CBD, Lygon Street, Queen Victoria Market and Melbourne Central enhances its appeal as an ideal location for students.

Multiplex has secured the contract following early contractor involvement, working closely with Brookfield, Citiplan and Journal Student Living to develop the project’s design, pricing and construction methodology.

Ross Snowball, regional managing director at Multiplex, expressed enthusiasm about the project, highlighting the company’s ability to leverage its robust credentials in successfully delivering residential apartment projects and its specialised expertise in the education sector.

“It builds upon our strong track record in delivering student housing in Victoria, with projects recently undertaken for both La Trobe and Monash Universities,” said Snowball.

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The new building, designed by Jackson Clement Burrows Architects, spans a total area of 13,632 square metres, featuring 464 beds across 15 storeys, along with three retail tenancies.

Brookfield head of real estate investments for Australia Ruban Kaneshamoorthy noted the significant demand for student accommodation in Australia

“We see this as a highly favourable environment to develop sites, with international students returning to study and existing accommodation almost at capacity,” said Kaneshamoorthy. “The winning combination of location, amenity and design will make this site a highly sought-after space for students.”

Savills Australia, a commercial real estate agency, affirms that Australia’s student accommodation sector remains robust and tightly held, marked by a shortage of supply. Melbourne, in particular, stands out as a hotspot for investors, with future rental growth supported by strong occupancy as international student visas have now returned to pre-COVID levels.

The planned development boasts a comprehensive range of amenities for future student occupants. The basement level will offer communal recreation spaces such as a gym, games room, laundry, kitchen and dining area, while the ground floor will provide an open entertainment area, lounge and library. Cosy and quiet study areas will be scattered across the first, second and third floors.

Journal Student Living also provides support services for its residents, helping them acquire living skills, access help, connect with like-minded students and participate in community activities.

Construction will involve the partial demolition of the building at 166-170 Bouverie Street, with the heritage façade retained. Other buildings on the 1,327-square-metre site will be demolished to make way for the new student lodging.

The project is slated for completion in the second quarter of 2025.

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