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By Willow Aliento
September 6, 2017
Tasmania is not usually top of mind for mainland commentators, but perhaps it should be for builders and trades, with a raft of new projects and surging investment fuelling a building bonanza.
There’s the $96 million Hedberg project underway by University of Tasmania – a performing arts and creative industries hub in Hobart, and the $260 million development to re-home the majority of Science education into Launceston.
While both of those projects involve public funding from State and Federal governments, the private sector is also stimulating plenty of activity
UK-based eco-developer The Eden Project announced in July this year it had launched a new company to drive international projects – one of them being a development in Tasmania for the Macquarie Point Development Corporation in Hobart.
MPDC approached Eden because it is looking to regenerate 15 hectares of environmentally-damaged land around the port area and turn it into a mixed-use development.
Other recently approved plans for major project buildings in Hobart include the new Royal Hobart Hospital, Myer/Crowne Plaza Hotel, and the Palace Hotel.
The Property Council of Australia Tasmania division has reported that recent proposals before Hobart City Council have also included two Fragrance Group’s hotels proposed for Collins and Davey Streets – towers of a reported 83m and 120m.
Master Builders Tasmania has also been broadcasting positive news, with the latest building approval figures reflecting an increasingly buoyant residential market.
Michael Kerschbaum, MBT’s Executive Director said, “The June approval figures, released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, show Tasmania’s building and construction industry is definitely improving with dwelling approvals increasing steadily since August 2016 in trend terms. The June approval figure of 213 dwellings means that Tasmania has recorded more than 200 approvals a month in 3 of the last 4 months, the first time since early 2016.”
“After a downturn flowing from the reduction of the First Home Builders Boost, dwelling approvals have rebounded. MBT only sees the figures further improving from here as underlying demand due to a tight rental market and higher population growth continue to contribute to the construction of more dwellings.”
“Non-residential approvals were modest with June recording $32.5 million in approvals, but this figure doesn’t correlate with work on the ground which is extremely high, especially in the South of the state. Non-residential construction activity continues to build with multiple large projects either underway or about to commence. MBT also expects non-residential approval values to climb from their low point in 2016/17 of $463.3 million.”
Residential Construction Rates in Australia Still Strong, But The Pipeline is Drying Up
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