Housing diversity and affordability for first-time buyers are among the drivers for a proposed $16 million project in Albion Park, developers say.
A 1.6-hectare site on the corner of Taylor Road and the Illawarra Highway in Albion Park is the location of a proposed new 61-dwelling community.
The 'Brookehaven on Taylor' project has an estimated construction value of $16 million.
The development application recently lodged with Shellharbour City Council includes one, two and three-bedroom dwellings in the form of townhouses, single-level cottages and back lane apartments.
In formulating their plans for the site, developers the Fountaindale Group say they were guided by the council's Local Housing Strategy, adopted in 2019.
The strategy acknowledged the ample supply of family homes in new subdivisions such as Calderwood on the western edge of Albion Park, and identified the need for a greater diversity of housing, in particular more small affordable options for singles, young couples, downsizing seniors and investors.
The strategy also noted that a large proportion of single-person households are living in two and three-bedroom homes, not necessarily by choice, but because smaller options were simply not available.
Fountaindale director Jennifer Macquarie said they were hopeful the proposal would be approved by about March/April next year, and for construction of the project to be completed by late 2023.
Ms Macquarie said while it was perhaps too early to determine exact prices for the new homes, she estimated they would start in the low $400,000 range to "in the $600,000's" for the larger ones.
Ms Macquarie said if approved, she expected first home buyers would be among those who would express significant interest during the off-the-plan sales campaign.
"We're also doing some bedsits - there's eight of those that we're trialing," she said.
"That could be a first home buyer product, or they could be investment opportunities."
Ms Macquarie said she believed the rapid escalation in house prices over the past 18 months had further fuelled demand for smaller options, as freestanding homes have become financially unattainable for an increasing number of people.
"Young couples wanting to take their first step into the property market are finding that a low maintenance one-bedroom apartment suits both their budget and their busy lives," Ms Macquarie said.
"Downsizers, whether singles or couples, also value low maintenance living and as their preference is for single storey we have made sure half the homes are single level cottages with private courtyards.
"With the current shortage of rental properties we also expect to see some investors in the mix."
The developers say the lowest part of the Brookehaven site has a creek running though it and is affected by backwater flooding in high rainfall events, which means about a third of the site won't be built on.
Ms Macquarie said the design inspiration for Brookehaven on Taylor has drawn upon Fountaindale's experience in creating Tullimbar Village, west of Albion Park.
"The traditional architecture incorporating weatherboards, high pitched metal roofs and front verandahs was very well-received and the smaller housing styles that we trialled such as the one-bedroom apartments in the back lanes sold extremely quickly," Ms Macquarie said.
"We have applied those same principles to this new project and are confident it will be equally popular."
According to a council spokesperson, the DA will be publicly exhibited between October 15 and November 15.