A new mixed-use urban village, which will include Melbourne’s first elevated Olympic running track, has been revealed as part of a planned $600 million development in Footscray.
Designed by Melbourne architectural firm Kavellaris Urban Design (KUD), the precinct will be named Joseph Place and proposes six residential buildings housing up to 1000 apartments. The development will also include a potential hotel, 4000sqm of retail space, expansive public open space, and a new retail laneway linking Footscray to the Maribyrnong River.
KUD director Billy Kavellaris said the vision for the site was to create a vibrant urban zone that encouraged interaction in its public and private spaces. “Joseph Place will elevate what’s on offer in Footscray, bringing its amenity in line with its inner city neighbours. The elevated Olympic-sized running track takes the idea of an apartment gym to the next level, encouraging health and wellbeing outdoors, but not out in the Melbourne traffic,” he said.
Kavellaris said the level of resident amenity, which may also include a rock climbing wall and theatre, was possible due to the site’s generous footprint and aimed to add value to residents’ lifestyles. “People want to interact with each other – it’s partly why cities are growing so rapidly and it informed how we approached the design of this site,” Mr Kavellaris said.
Developer Growland plans to transform the 13,500 square metre Footscray site into a new neighbourhood as part of the ongoing evolution of the inner city suburb. Growland CEO, Mr Yau, said Footscray is currently undergoing the same transformation Richmond underwent some years ago. “Footscray is currently in the midst of a demographic shift – attracting a new wave of students, young professionals and working families who are looking to reside in a well-connected community with easy access to transport services and state-of-the-art retail, dining and leisure facilities on their doorstep,” Mr Yau said.
“The inner west has been recognised as one of Melbourne’s most undervalued opportunities and is due for rapid growth over the next two to five years.”
Pending approval, construction on Joseph Place is planned to commence in early 2017, with the first apartment building due to launch for sale over the coming months.