Construction Update: Munro Development


Cranes have moved into place at the $450 million Munro development, comprising Melbourne’s first build-to-rent apartments in Melbourne CBD.

The Munro development, which forms part of the Queen Victoria Market precinct renewal project, is being delivered by PDG Corporation and builder Hamilton Marino, with the project now reaching the one year mark since kicking off construction.

More than 130,000 cubic tonnes of soil have been removed over the past year with excavation works now complete.

The council owned Munro site will also feature retail outlets, a boutique hotel along with the city’s first build-to-rent residential apartments.

Property giant Mirvac and Melbourne-based PDG entered into an agreement to develop the $333.5m build-to-rent project of 490 residences last year.

The project sits alongside the $250 million Queen Victoria Market precinct renewal.

▲ A new public park will replace the open-air carpark at Queen Victoria Market under the latest proposed redevelopment of the heritage-listed landmark.
▲ The proposed layout with 1.5 hectare public square

Cemetery below markets

Queen Victoria Market’s carpark was built over Melbourne’s first official cemetery, which still has thousands of bodies buried beneath the site.

The Queen Victoria Market officially opened in March 1878.

But prior to this, much of the land on which the market stands was the site of Melbourne’s first major cemetery, now located under the market car park.

The market was established initially east of the cemetery on Elizabeth Street, but expanded west in 1878 and began acquiring cemetery land for market sheds and stalls and eventually car park.

A recent public consultation has suggested ways to commemorate those buried beneath, with the likes of establishing plaques and statues at the proposed Market Square, a 1.5 hectare green plaza.

Related: Demand to Boost Build-to-Rent

▲ The Queen Victoria Market site in 1970.
▲ The Queen Victoria Market site in 1970.

City of Melbourne anticipates 24,000 new residents in the precinct by 2040, with the city’s investment aimed at encouraging more people to the market precinct.

“Our investment will provide $70 million in community facilities,” Lord mayor Sally Capp said of the project.

“Including a 120-place childcare centre, maternal and child health services, 48 affordable housing units and 2500sq m of open space and laneways.”

The City of Melbourne purchased the site, at the corner of Queen and Therry streets, for $76 million in late 2014 from the Munro family who had owned the site since 1910.

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