Little known investor JDH Capital has acquired the iconic brutalist landmark, Sirius, from the NSW government for $150 million.
The former public housing block will be retained and redeveloped by JDH Capital, a syndicate of investors led by Jean-Dominique Huynh.
The announcement, made by housing minister Melinda Pavey on Friday, ends a controversial sales campaign that stretched out more than a year. The formal listing came after objections from architects and preservation bodies led to a very public court battle and calls to retain the complex as social housing.
JDH Capital said it recognised the building’s heritage and has selected architecture firms BVN and Architectus to retain Sirius’ “iconic features”.
The developer has also tapped planning firm Urbis and Richard Crookes Constructions as part of its redevelopment team.
“We are very excited about the opportunity to retain and revitalise this iconic Sydney building,” a spokesperson for JDH Capital said.
“We look forward to working closely with the community to understand how we can best acknowledge and celebrate Sirius’ rich history and ensure the building is better integrated into its surrounds.”
JDH Capital beat out Danny Avidan’s RDA Property Group and Chinese developer Aoyuan, who remained shortlisted after its development partner Ecove retreated from the tender process following the Opal Tower fallout.
Housing minister Melinda Pavey said the sale was a “great outcome” and confirmed the proceeds would fund 300 social housing dwellings.
“This is expected to provide housing for around 630 people, helping the most vulnerable members of our community.”
The NSW government has previously refused to place the stepped Sirius building on the state’s heritage list.
Sydney mayor Clover Moore, who advocated for the retention of the building as public housing, said that she was pleased to see the building retained but disappointed to see it sold for market housing.
“We are facing a housing and homelessness crisis in the city, with only one per cent of homes in Sydney classified as affordable and the numbers of people sleeping rough on our streets increasing,” Moore said.
“Affordable housing is essential infrastructure to enable workers like nurses and teachers to live close to work, and prevent our cities from becoming enclaves for the rich.”