$84m towers ‘a catalyst’ for southern CBD

Wollongong’s inner city apartment boom is showing no signs of slowing down, with plans for yet another high-rise residential and commercial tower lodged with Wollongong City Council.

Developers hope to build a 205-apartment, 16-storey building atop a huge Kenny and Atchison Street site, which presently houses Mitchell’s fruit market and a sheet metal business.

Worth more than $83.5 million, the two-tower complex – to be developed by Central Coast company Southern Lighthouse Developments Pty Ltd – would have three street frontages, and also include thousands of square metres of commercial and retail space.

The building would also have four levels of basement parking, with space for 242 cars, 14 motorcycles and 85 bikes, if approved.

The commercial tenancies would house the existing fresh food market, as well as restaurants and cafes, a commercial gym, medical centre, office spaces and other retail tenancies for services like a newsagent, laundromat or bottle shop. 

This would act “as a catalyst for revitalisation within the area”, the plans said.

The proposed development is located on an important city fringe site at the southern edge of the Wollongong City Centre and will provide an entry statement to the [city] - Development application

The application says the high-rise tower would be “a landmark development” for the fast rising area at the southern edge of the CBD, noting the surrounding streets have undergone significant change in recent times.

Just metres from the proposed site, Sri Lankan developers have recently lodged plans to build a $22 million apartment block on a derelict house on Atchison Street which has been plagued by squatters and fires.

Boom town: High rise buildings are being built across inner city Wollongong, with hundreds of new apartments under construction.

Boom town: High rise buildings are being built across inner city Wollongong, with hundreds of new apartments under construction.

On Auburn Street, next to the railway, an 18-level apartment tower is underway, while two other Atchison Street high-rise blocks have recently been built.

“Former low scale commercial premises are making way for larger mixed use developments that are providing important apartment living, office space and retail space within close proximity of the established commercial areas and key transport hubs,” the application documents said.

“The proposed development is located on an important city fringe site at the southern edge of the Wollongong City Centre and will provide an entry statement to the [city].”

The 16-level complex will be assessed by the Southern Joint Regional Planning Panel, as its capital investment value is more than $20 million.

The plans are open for public comment until November 27.

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