Apartment developments boom in Melbourne

More and more building applications for apartment developments as builders respond to strong demand for affordable housing in the overheated property market.

Melbourne homes now costing more than $1 million, property developers are rushing to bring multi-unit projects to the market in inner and outer suburbs at prices competitive with the traditional detached house and land.

The south-east growth centre of Greater Dandenong had the most applicants, followed by Melbourne, Boroondara, Maribyrnong then Stonnington. In the first five months of this year there were 140 applications for housing projects of 10 units or more across Melbourne, a 42 per cent increase on the same period in 2009.

Greater Dandenong again stood out as the most popular area for developers, followed by the City of Melbourne, Moreland and Boroondara, research by real estate group Oliver Hume shows.

Typical examples of the multi-unit housing boom include an eight-level complex of 39 apartments (15 one-bedroom and 20 two-bedroom and four three-bedroom) in Dandenong and in the City of Melbourne a 21-unit development of one and two-bedroom units over four levels at the old Mulcahy’s Hotel on Victoria Street, North Melbourne.

While the traditional detached home remains the overwhelming choice of most Victorians, living in a multi-unit development is becoming increasingly popular.

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