Newtown property sets land record amid parkside purchase

Two about-600sq m blocks were snapped up in a record-breaking industrial deal as the transition of Newtown’s commercial precinct gathers pace.

The $2.5m deal for 10 and 12 Riversdale Rd, Newtown, set a land rate of $2010 per square metre for the site overlooking Friers Reserve, which Darcy Jarman, Newtown agent Andrew Prowse said was extraordinary.

“We had an around $1500sq m achieved 9 months ago which at the time in itself was extraordinary,” Mr Prowse said.

“To achieve a rate north of $2000sq m has certainly not been achieved here before and you’d be hard pressed to find a result anywhere in Melbourne.”

Mr Prowse said the incredibly tight supply of land in Geelong’s sought-after inner city industrial estates was pushing up prices.

“When it does come to the fore, those that have the capacity are pushing themselves to the limit knowing that there may not be another opportunity,” Mr Prowse said.

“He’s a local developer. He doesn’t know exactly what he’ll put on there but it’s likely to be a commercial office concept overlooking the park.

“It will be the highest and best use, something of a commercial office nature.”

The sale came a week after local developers paid $2.6m for a 1763sq m mixed use site at 36 Boswell Ave, Newtown.

That’s the clear direction in the Newtown industrial estate, with another proposal for a business park on Riversdale Rd submitted to council planners recently.

“That will be the logical step, it will be a higher and best use for industrial land if you like and not be dissimilar to what has been Cremorne and now what we see in Abbotsford and Collingwood,” he said.

The changing nature in Newtown, which has also seen rents rising to about $200sq m in new builds, is creating more interest from tenants to move to Moolap or North Geelong.

“The rates that we are getting from Newtown and South Geelong is up to $200sq m for industrial space for the new builds, where North Geelong you can still acquire even the new builds for close to $150, so it is marginally more competitive.

“And there is a lot more of the older amenity in Moolap and North Geelong still, which you can get your hands on.”

Mr Prowse said the Moolap industrial precinct still has some time to go, but is probably the next frontier for industrial land in Geelong

“Even the rates there that are being achieved have effectively doubled in the past three years which is not dissimilar to other pockets, but they were coming off a much lower base,” he said.