An Atchison Street property which has been plagued by fires –including a blaze which shut the road on Wednesday afternoon – could soon be developed into a $22 million high-rise tower.
Sri Lankan developers from Sydney’s Affinity Property Investment Pty Ltd have lodged plans with Wollongong City Council to build an 11-storey mixed-use complex at 31-33 Atchison Street.
If approved, the building would stand 40 metres high and have 52 apartments atop ground floor retail space and a 60-place child care centre.
Residents would have access to a communal first-level terrace and a rooftop space, with barbecue areas, outdoor furniture and a grassed passive recreation area.
Under the plans, the child care centre would operate from 6.30am to 6.30pm Monday to Friday and cater for kids aged between 0-6 years old.
There would also be two levels of basement parking under the building, with space for 70 cars.
In their application to the council, the developers say the building will “deliver a marked improvement to the quality and amenity of the public domain and the streetscape”.
The proposal includes demolition of basement construction works at 31 Atchison Street and the burnt-out house at 33 Atchison Street.
According to Wollongong-based Fire and Rescue NSW Inspector Greg Houston there have been concerns about squatters using the derelict property, prompting investigations into fires which have broken out there in the past six months.
On Wednesday, crews responded to numerous Triple-0 calls to find back of the house well-alight and locked down the street and nearby businesses due to concerns about asbestos.
Earlier this year, more than 70 per cent of the property was burnt down in a May fire.
There is no suggestion the planned development of the site and the fires are linked.
The run down site is in a rapidly changing part of inner-Wollongong, located next to two recently developed high-rise buildings – a six-storey commercial tower, and a nine-storey residential tower nearing completion.
Previously, an eight storey commercial and residential tower proposal was approved for the 31-33 Atchison Street site. However, this 2010 consent has lapsed.
The new development plans will be considered by the Southern Joint Regional Planning Panel as the capital value of the proposal exceeds $5 million.
The plans are on public exhibition through Wollongong council’s website, with feedback open until September 30.