Box Hill church mooted as 18-storey apartment site
An 18-storey apartment block could soon replace a 1950s Box Hill church.
Developers are circling St Paul’s Lutheran Church, at 709-713 Station St, which has hit the market with $20 million price expectations.
Colliers International’s Bryson Cameron says the church’s 2597sqm corner block was one of the best remaining development sites in Box Hill.
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The site is in a residential growth 3 zone that allows for mixed use, including high-density housing of up to 18 storeys and aged care or medical facilities.
“We’ve had significant interest from buyers already with possibilities including land banking and permanent development for buildings such as aged care centres,” Cameron says.
“No other church groups or denominations have shown interest however.”
The Station St pocket is a prime development opportunity tucked between Box Hill Gardens and Box Hill Central shopping centre.
Church spokesman David Pietsch says the congregation has outgrown the site and will move to another church in Box Hill South in 2019.
While there is a strong attachment to St Paul’s, he says the site is no longer suitable with development booming around it.
“We’ve moved beyond sentiment,” says Pietsch, the church’s Strategic Property Group chairman.
“Station St has got so busy and parking was getting more and more difficult.
“I expect the church will be knocked over but a church is about the people, not the building.”
Two medical clinics 716 and 718 Station St opposite the church are also up for grabs. They will be auctioned by Lindellas Box Hill on September 1 as a single 1460sqm site with a price tag of $7 million.
Pietsch says the decision to sell the church and move follows years of weighing up options and recent advice from traffic engineers that the site has become untenable for a church.
The church purchased the former St James Uniting Church at 1201-1205 Riversdale Rd earlier this year and will move in next year after redevelopment work.St Paul’s is for sale by an expressions of interest campaign that closes on September 5.
This article from Leader Newspapers originally appeared as “Box Hill church could be replaced by 18-storey apartment block as developers circle”.