Development powering up Queensland

In 2015, we launched more than $2 billion worth of projects across southeast Queensland.

Just last week we launched three projects with a combined value of more than $500 million.

This is a perfect snapshot of the acceleration of the development scene across the region and the number of projects that are coming to the market.

Oversupply? Well let’s give this some context – it depends what markets we are talking about.

Last week we launched the magnificent $325 million Mary Lane residential and hotel development in the heart of the Brisbane CBD.

The highly successful over 50s provider Halcyon officially opened its $100m Halcyon Lakeside community at Bli Bli on the Sunshine Coast and the following day took the wraps off the centrepiece leisure club at its $90 million Vision by Halcyon community at Hope Island on the Gold Coast.

Mary Lane’s early success is found in the demand for CBD apartments against limited supply. Mary Lane is actually one of a small number of apartment projects in the heart of the CBD. The project’s sales success to date follows the sellout of Sunland’s Abian project just around the corner on Alice Street – prior to construction completion.

According to Colliers International, projects in the CBD equate to only 10 per cent of Brisbane’s total apartment supply – with strong sales rates and volumes in the two current CBD projects leaving fewer than 500 new apartments on the market.

“With sales hitting at around 200 per quarter, that translates to just over six months’ supply,” he says.

“In a climate where there’s a lot of discussion about oversupply, the CBD is actually facing an undersupply.”

Mary Lane's ground floor retail and atrium
Mary Lane’s ground floor retail and atrium

Contracts for Mary Lane, being developed by mining and property magnate Sam Chong, who has lived in Brisbane for 41 years, were issued at the start of the year with $60 million in sales achieved.

Similarly, Halcyon has achieved $45 million in sales at Vision by Halcyon and completely sold the first stage of Halcyon Lakeside ahead of the project’s launch.

Such is the demand for over 50s living in southeast Queensland, Halcyon is now planning a 500-home community in the existing Gainsborough Greens at Pimpama between Brisbane and the Gold Coast, having late last year purchased a site from Mirvac which owns and is developing the Gainsborough Greens community.

Major developers are working hard in this corridor – with all the majors reporting very strong sales for general residential real estate in new communities – all in the knowledge that the Coomera Town Centre is set to become a reality. A new satellite city is in the making.

Listed developer Villa World has acquired additional land at its Parkside Coomera project to cater for growing demand for its product in this area. The company, which delivers affordable house and land packages in key growth areas and currently has a strong focus on southeast Queensland, reported a half-year net profit surge to the tune of 57 per cent (totalling $20.4 million) off the back of strong sales supported by favourable market conditions.

Vision by Halcyon Leisure Club
Vision by Halcyon Leisure Club

There’s a bit of negativity in the marketplace at the moment and it’s coming from those who picked 30 of the last two recessions (sarcasm intended), but meanwhile the southeast just keeps powering along.

Late last week we had a field trip to Sekisui House’s $2 billion Ecco Ripley community in the western corridor. The construction activity and sales demand for communities in this area is amazing. The infrastructure is phenomenal with the Centenary Motorway and Cunningham Highway and all the major developers are building and selling in this area.

Ecco Ripley – wedged between Ipswich and Springfield Lakes – is set to become its own satellite city in coming years with a massive town centre proposed which will create a world class, 21st century community not unlike North Lakes and Springfield.

The construction activity in this area is remarkable. Don’t take my word for it, check it out for yourself.

Bring on 2016. The property market spikes of the southern states may have run their course, but Queensland’s has only just begun.