Could old Brunswick bank become the next Penny Black?

What will become of this grand old Brunswick bank?
What will become of this grand old Brunswick bank?

Buyers will need a hefty deposit to secure this Romanesque-style former bank in Brunswick, which the agent says could be the next Penny Black.

The circa-1913 State Savings Bank of Victoria has been packaged with a longstanding hardware store and a hair and nail salon at 836-842 Sydney Rd.

The package is poised to sell for well over $4 million.

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Savills Melbourne agent Jesse Radisich says the commercial one-zoned properties stretch over 1531sqm with 30m street frontage and wide rear access.

“The vendors operated the hardware store and acquired the two other properties over a 60-year period,” he says.

“There is heritage overlay on the former bank and it has a beautiful facade which would be retained.

The three properties are owned by the one family.

“It was being used as restaurant and hospitality venue, and we think it has similar potential to great venues like The Penny Black (a bar, restaurant and music venue closer to the city down Sydney Rd).

“But it has been vacant for a little while now.”

The double-storey former bank is of local historic, architectural and aesthetic significance, according to the City of Moreland.

The properties allow for at least six levels of development, and a proposal of 57 apartments has been prepared.

Radisich says developers are the key target given the size of the land and its clear potential, but investors and owner-occupiers were also potential suitors.

A former bank, hardware store and hairdressing salon have being packaged together.

“It is a rapidly developing pocket of Brunswick that will appeal to developers,” Radisich says.

“I look forward to seeing how the bank building is adapted and whether it is given a new lease on life.”

The former bank last sold for $475,000 in December 1997 while the hardware shop at 838-840 Sydney Rd sold for $52,000 in December 1979, according to CoreLogic.

The hairdresser at 842 Sydney Rd has been leased for $15,600 per year since May 2010.

This article from Leader Newspapers originally appeared as “Could this old Sydney Rd bank be the next Penny Black?”.