Ryrie St, Geelong landmark is on the block
Tower cranes are expected to remain a feature of Geelong’s city skyline for the next decade as developers pore over opportunities.
Gartland Property director Michael De Stefano said interest in property the central business district was growing as it emerged from covid lockdowns and work from home orders.
While there’s still a way to go to return Geelong’s key commercial precinct to pre-covid normalcy, Mr De Stefano said the level of interest in the city pointed to a future development boom.
“Certainly the amount of interest in Geelong has continued to increase and it’s been driven heavily from outside the region,” he said.
“Sixty per cent of my buyers are coming from outside this region now.”
CBD activity remained in a holding pattern, waiting for a significant number of office workers and tertiary students to return, he said.
“We haven’t got our government agencies back, Deakin isn’t operating at capacity yet but once international migration is back and we get everyone back to work, I think the CBD is going to go through another real surge in growth,” he said.
“That’s why I see developers are all over Geelong at the moment because they can see the attributes that make is so popular.”
The city is already a hive of activity, with cranes towering above the Holiday Inn site in Ryrie St and the nearby Geelong Arts Centre, with major projects also taking shape for Quest Apartments in Gheringhap St and Barwon Health in Moorabool St.
Mr De Stefano said there was a number of projects in the pipeline for Geelong that haven’t been revealed publicly.
“I think the cranes in the air is something we should get used to because I think there will be fair bit of development that will come in the next five to 10 years.”
A potential development candidate is Ryrie Hall, a six-level student accommodation complex at 123 Ryrie St that offers a wide mix of opportunities in a central Geelong location close to the arts and cultural precinct.
“It has a wide range of potential for hospitality, student accommodation, apartments, a boutique hotel and offices so we have already started to get from local, Melbourne and interstate inquiry,” he said.
“It’s already got built form there so you’re not having to look for planning or building permits.”
Each floor is separately titled in the building designed for the State Bank in 1957, while the property funnels out to Geelong’s laneways precinct at the rear.
“It can be a real mixed use development with a potential restaurant on the ground floor and even a rooftop bar and the potential to go up a couple of floors but it’s certainly in the right precinct,” he said.