MAB Corporation, the developers behind a long-standing 24-year-old development application in Melbourne’s Docklands, have secured unanimous endorsement from the City of Melbourne. The nod comes after meticulous revisions and alterations to the original 1999 application, aligning it with the requirements of city planning officials.
Initially conceived in 1999 as a proposal for a 50-meter commercial building at 396-416 Docklands Drive, the revised application envisions a dynamic mixed-use precinct featuring two triangular podiums – one on the east and one on the west – accompanied by a total of five towers. The updated plan outlines towers ranging from 50 to 70 meters in height, situated over two 20-meter podiums, catering to residential, office, and retail needs at 396-416 Docklands Drive.
This expansive nearly-hectare site, currently functioning as a commercial car park, is the last undeveloped parcel of land in NewQuay, north of Docklands Drive.
While awaiting final approval from Minister for Planning Sonya Kilkenny, the proposed plans include a 700-square-meter public park at the intersection of Little Docklands Drive and St Mangos Lane, adjacent to Docklands Primary School.
Acting Lord Mayor Nicholas Reece expressed his satisfaction with the proposal.
“This is a happy day for Melbourne, a happy day for Docklands and a happy day for the community at Docklands Primary School. This application is 24 years in the making, and I’m really pleased with what is before us,” he said.
“The most exciting aspect of this proposal is the 700-square-metres of new green space, which is directly opposite the Docklands Primary School. For those of us who know this area, we know that there’s a desperate need for green space around the Docklands Primary School.
“This proposal is going to deliver a new park right in the spot where it is most needed and that is fantastic.”
Designed collaboratively by ARM Architecture and Rush Wright Associates, the precinct incorporates retail and dining options within each podium, office floor space, podium car parks, a public park adjacent to Docklands Primary School (to be maintained by the council), and a new laneway linking the primary school to the tram depot and New Quay Central Park.
The development’s potential impact is substantial, anticipating the creation of 500 to 600 residential dwellings and 20,000 square meters of commercial spaces. Positioned as the only remaining undeveloped piece of land south of Little Docklands Drive, this site is currently utilized as a car park.
The west podium features three residential towers, while the east holds two. Planning documents emphasize the integration of podiums with the existing streetscape character, ensuring each tower possesses a unique architectural and material language while collectively presenting a harmonious ensemble.
In a collaborative effort, MAB Corporation worked closely with the City of Melbourne throughout the application process. The development is slated to unfold in four stages, with either the west or east podium marking the initial phase. Concurrently, the park’s development will align with the first stage to proceed.
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