Macquarie Moves to Offload Martin Place Tower


Australian investment bank Macquarie is scouring the market for a buyer for the south tower in its Martin Place integrated station development after clearing the final hurdle for approval in August.

The development rights to the tower—dubbed 39 Martin Place in marketing materials—will likely draw interest from offshore and domestic heavyweights, with initial price estimates ranging widely from $700 million to $900-plus million.

Macquarie issued a formal expressions of interest campaign for the development asset on Thursday.

The 29-storey south tower, on the site of the former Tiffany & Co store, is the smaller of the two commercial towers approved as part of the integrated station development and will yield 30,000sq m of A-grade office space.

Macquarie looks set to hang on to the 39-storey tower at the northern entrance to the metro station, which will deliver more than 75,000sq m of office space when complete.

The bank is also delivering the new underground metro station with construction partner Lendlease—who is emerging as a likely candidate to acquire the southern tower—along with a retail and recreational precinct.

The six-year timeline for the project will mean that Macquarie and its new development partner is responsible for the delivery of the integrated station project by 2024.

Related: Macquarie’s Martin Place Towers Win Approval

Martin Place
▲ The 29-storey southern tower is on the block (right). Also pictured: the metro atrium at the southern entrance and concourse.

The two Tzannes and Grimshaw-designed office towers will cost an estimated $637 million and will be built at the same time as construction works are carried out on the metro station.

The 29-storey southern tower will offer 1,100sq m floor plates in the tower and 1,300sq m floorplates in the podium, with more than 1,000sq m of retail space on the ground floor.

The controversial deal was put forward by Macquarie as part of an unsolicited proposal in 2017 and, despite objections from neighbours GPT Group and Dexus and the Australian Institute of Architects, won the government’s full backing in August.

In undertaking the proposal, Macquarie has promised major improvements to the public domain with two new plazas at the north and south station entrances, a station concourse and covered pedestrian walkway and a retail and dining precinct.

Macquarie paid the government $355 million for the air rights above above Sydney’s “civic heart” in 2018.

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