Vicinity Centres (Vicinity) has unveiled proposed plans to revitalise the heart of Box Hill’s CBD, to create a bustling new town square and mixed-use precinct with new residential, commercial and retail developments, representing a very significant private investment into Box Hill.
One of Victoria’s largest private urban regeneration projects, the vision is to transform 5.5 hectares in the centre of Box Hill into a world class mixed-use and retail precinct for more than 6,000 workers and 3,800 residents by 2030.
With a landholding in the centre of Box Hill larger than three CBD blocks Vicinity’s vision includes:
- one of the most significant public spaces to be created in suburban Melbourne to date, opening up Box Hill’s town centre with a Spanish Steps-inspired amphitheatre, town square and a new extension of Main Street – for hosting events, entertainment, art and music
- the creation of new walkways and roads connecting the precinct’s residential, commercial, transport, retail and hospitality offerings to Whitehorse Road
- consolidation of the majority of Box Hill Central’s retail between Main Street and Carrington Road, capitalising on the iconic Asian fresh food market and dining experiences, and leveraging the centre’s location at one of Melbourne’s busiest rail and bus transport hubs
- a new mixed-use precinct on the land fronting Whitehorse Road with up to 250,000 square metres of new buildings, including: new residences; office accommodation; a hotel; and contemporary retail – all taking advantage of the transport interchange.
Over the past decade, Box Hill has seen the addition of more than 2,790 apartments, five new hotels, high rise offices, and population growth from 16,480 in 2006 to more than 23,600 in 2019.
Vicinity’s Chief Development Officer, Carolyn Viney, said: “As Victoria’s fastest growing Metropolitan Activity Centre outside the CBD, Box Hill Central already welcomes 26 million visitors every year. Our vision builds on Box Hill’s planned future growth as well as its existing strengths, including its longstanding reputation as a key destination to visit for fresh food and exciting flavours from around the world.
“Vicinity’s vision also draws on the already enviable status of Box Hill as one of Melbourne’s busiest rail and bus transport hubs, nearby health and education facilities, and its prominent, elevated position commanding generous views of the surrounding landscape.”
With Box Hill gathering momentum as a key business, residential and retail destination, Vicinity’s vision aims to respond to evolving consumer preferences for an enhanced, compelling shopping experience, complemented by new workplaces, public spaces and diverse experiences to discover.
Ms Viney said with a young, highly educated, hardworking and affluent local community, the centre of Box Hill needs to reflect their aspirations, which is why our future vision is about creating a thriving urban space to meet changing consumer preferences to live, work and play close to home.
“Connecting people together and breathing new life into the centre of Box Hill by reinvigorating its public places is one of the most important project outcomes. Vicinity’s revitalisation plan seeks to do this by building on all of Box Hill’s existing strengths and retaining the things that make it unique,” Ms Viney said.
The proposed regeneration plans will be delivered in stages aligned to market demand with the first three Development Applications including:
- 3,350 square metres of new public space featuring a town square, amphitheatre, extension of Main Street and extension of Prospect Street to link with Clisby Court and Whitehorse Road
- a 25-level, 42,000 square metre commercial office building in the heart of the town centre, next to Box Hill train station
- a 48-level, 43,000 square metre residential building with 366 apartments, 7,000 square metres of office space and retail on the ground level trading onto a revitalised Main Street.
Ms Viney said the Development Applications for the public space and commercial office building have now been lodged. A further Development Application for a residential building is expected to be lodged mid-year.
“Our vision reflects our long-term confidence in the Box Hill region and Melbourne’s future growth. Over the lifecycle of the project, Vicinity would be creating 2,400 direct jobs for construction workers and, upon completion, there will be up to 6,000 new jobs in the precinct,” Ms Viney said.
The proposed urban regeneration project reflects the Victorian Government’s Plan Melbourne 2017-2050 strategy which identifies Box Hill as a significant location for jobs and housing growth, and a major health and education centre with Box Hill Hospital and the TAFE precinct, all served by rail, bus and trams.
Vicinity’s vision for Box Hill Central has benefited from extensive community engagement, with local organisations and stakeholders, Whitehorse City Council and the Victorian Government.
The Development Applications are subject to approval by Whitehorse City Council and commencement of the projects will be subject to approval by Vicinity’s Board.
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