An artist’s impression of the proposed development.
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  • The Queensland arm of Australia’s largest trade union has turned developer, lodging plans for a 377-unit build-to-rent development in Bowen Hills
  • The union has spent $17 million acquiring six sites neighbouring its headquarters of 16 Campbell Street
  • 53 studios, 195 one-bedroom, 104 two-bedroom and 25 three-bedroom units will make up the 377 units
  • The site, 9-25 Campbell Street, currently hosts light industrial and commercial buildings of one to two storeys

The Queensland arm of the CFMEU has lodged plans for a 377-unit, 30-storey build-to-rent apartment project in Brisbane’s Bowen Hills.

Led by state secretary Michael Ravbar, CFMEU Queensland acquired the services of Urbis to prepare a town planning report which detailed the plans for 19-25 Campbell Street, Bowen Hills site.

The union has been accumulating land around their headquarters on 16 Campbell Street over the past few years, racking up a $17 million bill picking up six neighbouring sites, creating a 3276 sqm amalgamated location.

Sitting within the Bowen Hills priority development area, the union plans to design a 377-unit build-to-rent complex, which will comprise of “basement and podium parking, podium units to the south and retail and activated uses on ground level,” according to a design statement from Nettletontribe Architects.

The proposal calls for a mixture of apartment types, with 53 studios, 195 one-bedroom, 104 two-bedroom and 25 three-bedroom units.

The design of the tower aims to reflect the Queensland sub-tropical climate “with planted edges and shady undercroft pedestrian paths” and will feature a tower on a podium form with residential uses within the tower and retail on the ground.

The town planning report said the build-to-rent model for the site was promoted in “response to a clear demand for nuanced housing needs in the Bowen Hills area — specifically designed for rental accommodation”.

The site currently hosts light industrial and commercial buildings of one to two storeys, but under plans from the trade union plans to match the nearby Madison Heights Apartments and Panorama tower which are both 30 storeys in height.

Build-to-rent is a booming asset class in Australia and refers to developments in which all apartments are owned by the developer and then rented out.

It isn’t the only build-to-rent development planned for the Bowen Hills location just north of the CBD, private developer Pelicano is constructing a 77-unit development at 6-8 Edmondstone Road.

CFMEU Queensland have not responded to an enquiry from The Market Herald.

An aerial view of the site. Source: The proposal’s town planning report
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