Buyer to use building permit on prominent Newtown site after multi-million dollar sale

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Approved permits stand for a three-storey mixed use development at 452-456 La Trobe Tce, Newtown.

WILL a residential development work on the prominent site at the corner of La Trobe Tce and West Fyans St, Newtown?

That’s the question Geelong builders apparently posed as the 1000sq m site with two Victorian-era weatherboard houses was on the market, Tournier Real Estate agent Heath Tournier said.

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Approved permits stand for a three-storey mixed use development at 452-456 La Trobe Tce, Newtown.

A Ballarat buyer has purchased the site for $2.1 million and plans to take up an existing permit for a stalled residential development.

The seller, Geelong Finance Company director Peter Desbrowe-Annear, confirmed this week the properties had sold and the firm would be relocating to the building next to Geelong Harley-Davidson on nearby La Trobe Blvd.

Plans and permits are in place for a three-storey mixed use development at 452-456 La Trobe Tce, Newtown, comprising 21 apartments, an office and an underground car park.

The Barwon Grange Apartments project was marketed in 2016 to 2018.

Mr Tournier said he’d been working with three potential buyers for the majority of the campaign, which launched in late January.

“We had three parties fighting over it the whole time,” Mr Tournier said.

“It wasn’t a long campaign as such, everybody was playing each other off.

“Funnily enough, I had two higher offers when it went under offer and I had a phone call this week from a guy wanting to put an offer in.”

The project offered 21 one and two-bedroom apartments overlooking Kardinia Park.

Mr Tournier said two Melbourne buyers were also keen on the project.

He the buyers would use the permit, though the development might change.

“To be honest, a lot of Geelong builders were a bit sceptical of building on that corner because of the traffic and things — that was the feedback I was getting from the start,” Mr Tournier said.

“But then I was talking to this other builder from Melbourne and they were just laughing at me, saying Heath come on, we build on Alexandra Pde.”

The property settles later this month.

An off-the-plan sales campaign for the Barwon Grange Apartments project ran from 2016 until 2018.

That project was slated to include a combination of one and two-bedroom apartments with designer kitchens with European appliances, open-plan living areas and large balconies.

That section of La Trobe Tce has been a hive of building activity recently, with two apartment developments under construction, along with a commercial building that’s set to become the new home to Geelong-based insurer Adroit.

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