Australia’s largest BTR development in South Yarra approved

Greystar and Fender Katsalidis receive approval for the largest Build to Rent development in South Yarra, Australia.

Greystar's South Yarra Build to Rent development in South Yarra, Australia - Fender Katsalidis | BTR News
Greystar's South Yarra Build to Rent development in South Yarra, Australia.

Greystar and Fender Katsalidis have received planning approval of a new Build to Rent development in the Inner Melbourne suburb of South Yarra. This is the largest Build to Rent development to receive a permit in Australia, allowing for the construction of 625 units and 2,400 square metres of retail and commercial office space.

The new development will bring increased housing diversity and best-in-class resident amenity facilities to Australia, showcasing industry-leading innovation from Greystar, Fender Katsalidis, Contour Town Planning and City of Stonnington.

“This purposeful design will not only deliver a best-in-class Build to Rent experience to consumers with expertly managed apartments, workspaces and abundant amenity areas, but it will also introduce an innovative new flexible living typology to Australian renters. This project is not just the largest development of its kind, but it is an important step in increasing the diversity of housing choice in Australia.”

Chris Key, Managing Director for Greystar in Australia

The Build to Rent market in Australia is in its early stages – but it’s a highly regarded emerging asset class building on the success of the model in international markets. The success of Build to Rent in Australia is collaboration with stakeholders, showcasing not just the positive social and environmental impacts on the housing industry, but also the overall benefit that Build to Rent developments offer to the construction industry and the Australian economy.

This new development will create approximately 970 jobs during the construction phase, and approximately 150 further jobs through the office, retail and onsite management post-completion.

Aerial view of the South Yarra development - Greystar | Fender Katsalidis | BTR News
Aerial view of the South Yarra development.

“We worked closely with the City of Stonnington to ensure the planning process was driven by collaborative innovation. While Build to Rent is an emerging housing product in Australia, we believe it is simply a matter of time before this residential sector gains a foothold as a primary investment allocation for institutional investors in the Australian market. The City of Stonnington has worked closely with us to understand the nuances of the Build to Rent model, and as a result, we have collectively delivered our shared vision of a truly innovative development plan.”

Chris Key, Managing Director for Greystar in Australia

The proposal includes two towers over a combined basement, with ground level retail offerings that will activate a pedestrian through-link and contribute to the precinct and neighbourhood amenity. The first 30-storey Yarra Street tower will include 382 Build to Rent apartments and 2,000 square metres of commercial office space. The second 21-storey Claremont Street tower will provide 243 fully furnished, flexible living apartments. The development will also deliver a new pedestrian laneway leading to South Yarra train station, which will conveniently connect residents to Melbourne’s CBD in just two stops.

“Our design centres on integrating Build to Rent and flex housing into the character of South Yarra’s Forrest Hill precinct through the incorporation of amenity and a focus on the site’s context.

“The towers will be distinct but achieve cohesion using colours and materiality, with the architecture providing the foundations to allow Greystar to operate numerous services and provide a high-quality living experience for its residents.”

James Pearce, Director at Fender Katsalidis
Greystar's South Yarra Build to Rent development - Fender Katsalidis | BTR News
Greystar’s South Yarra Build to Rent development.

The podium design focuses on enhancing the pedestrian journey for the community while the two towers above are a composition of interlocking, elegant slender forms that maximise views for residents.

Greystar acquired the two adjoining properties on Yarra and Claremont Streets in February 2020, with this development capitalising on two of the last remaining development sites of scale in the sought-after Forrest Hill Precinct. The local area has an abundance of retail, food and entertainment offerings, especially along Toorak Road and Chapel Street, that all add to the highly desirable characteristics of this location for modern living.

“This Build to Rent project is an important step in Greystar’s strategic vision of unlocking complex development sites to bring high-quality housing options to a broader spectrum of the rental population.”  

Chris Key, Managing Director for Greystar in Australia

Despite the challenges experienced in markets due to the global Covid-19 pandemic, over the medium term the growth in the Australian population is expected to continue to drive household formation and rental demand. Housing affordability remains a significant issue in markets like Melbourne and Sydney driving continued growth in the rental cohort, with rental demand also being driven by younger generations prioritising lifestyle experiences that come with living in urban centres.