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First stage of Nine’s Willoughby HQ redevelopment lodged

As yet, no sale has been struck, but the agent advising Euro Properties, Colliers International national director, development sites, residential, Guillaume Volz said despite contrary speculation in the media, demand for the site has intensified and negotiations are continuing with parties for a sum well over $220 million.

Nine Entertainment Co is the owner of this masthead. All Nine’s businesses will relocate to a new site at 1 Denison Street, North Sydney, next year, which is being constructed by Multiplex and owned by Garry Rothwell’s Winton Property Group. Nine will continue to lease the Willoughby site until it moves.

“It is a complex project/site and this has resulted in protracted negotiations as parties continue to develop their understanding of this significant trophy site,” Mr Volz said.

Market drivers such as the further interest rate cut to 1 per cent by the Reserve Bank of Australia, as well as signs of the Sydney market recovering and gearing up for the next cycle, have contributed to the continued strong interest in the site.”

Jeff Chan, executive director for Euro Properties, said the plan remains to progress the site on a business as usual basis with a view to setting the project to commence construction in 2021.

It is expected any new owners will be selling the apartments at a higher point in the housing cycle, despite the current weak market.

UBS’s economic team has downgraded housing activity to negative 20 per cent, but this will be offset by more anticipated consumption.

“Given weak loans and starts for new housing and renovations, we downgrade our already negative forecasts for dwelling activity to a bearish 20 per cent peak-to-trough fall,” the UBS economic team says.

“With negative 8 per cent year on year in 2019 and negative 10 per cent in 2020, albeit still 170,000 starts. But, following the passage of tax cuts, and another rate cut coming, we marginally upgrade consumption to 1.8 per cent to 2.4 per cent; leaving GDP unrevised at a below consensus 1.9 per cent to 2.4 per cent.”

But they added that optimism has returned to housing, following the outcome of the NSW and federal elections, the RBA interest rate cuts and the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority easing.

“As such we expect loans and prices to stabilise this year, with the worst of the decline likely now behind us,” the UBS economist team said

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