10-year transformation project to revitalise the heart of Box Hill

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.

KEY FACTS

Box Hill

  • Vicinity’s two landholdings in the centre of Box Hill are just under the size of three CBD blocks
  • South site: land size 36,250 square metres, 23,800 square metres of retail floor space, is located between Main Street, Carrington Road, Station Street and Thurston Street, sits above Box Hill train station and below Box Hill bus interchange
  • North site: land size 18,080 square metres, 14,500 square metres of existing retail floor space and car parking fronting Whitehorse Road
  • Vicinity’s Box Hill sites are integrated with public transport including the city’s busiest bus interchange, Box Hill train station and the tram terminus on Whitehorse Road.  The area has also been slated by the State Government to be the start of the future Suburban Rail Loop
  • The Victorian Government’s Plan Melbourne 2017-2050 strategy designates Box Hill as one of nine Metropolitan Activity Centres and a Health and Education Precinct
  • Today inner Box Hill is home to 23,600 residents, more than 18,000 workers, 15,000 students and over 850 hospital beds across Box Hill Hospital and Epworth Eastern
  • Box Hill is just 14 kilometres from Melbourne’s city centre and it’s a 20-minute train ride into the CBD.

Vision overview

  • 10-year plus vision to transform Vicinity’s 5.5 hectares to breathe new life into the heart of Box Hill
  • One of the largest private urban regeneration projects in the country
  • Realise 250,000 square metres of mixed-use development through:
    • On the north site, create seven development sites with the opportunity to deliver office accommodation, a hotel, new public open space and 1,900 new residential addresses
    • On the south site, consolidate the majority of the retail offering and modernise and remix the retail centre
    • The seven development sites on the north have the capacity to deliver up to 80,000 square metres of commercial accommodation, a premium hotel and 1,900 new residential addresses.

The vision’s first three projects

New public space

  • $21 million investment in the creation of new and upgrade of existing public open space including the conversion of more than 3,350 sqm of private land into publicly accessible space
  • New public open spaces including a town square, amphitheatre-style steps, walkways and roads plus the revitalisation of Main Street to reconnect the heart of Box Hill
  • Masterplan by ARM, landscape designed by Lat27 and buildings designed by Bates Smart

Commercial office building

  • Total investment value of $377 million
  • 42,000 sqm of net lettable area
  • 25 levels
  • Frontages to Main Street and Prospect Street
  • The first large scale office complex outside Melbourne’s CBD targeting; Five Star Green Star and WELL Building Certification and a Property Council of Australia A grade rating.
  • 200 car parks
  • Designed by Bates Smart

Residential building

  • Total investment value of $285 million
  • 366 apartments over 48 levels
  • 7,000 sqm of new office space and retail activating ground levels and trading onto Main Street and Prospect Street
  • 271 car parks
  • Frontages to Main Street and Prospect Street
  • Designed by Bates Smart

For further information please contact:

Kat Rellos
T +61 411 245 099
E katherine.rellos@vicinity.com.au

Ali O'Shea
T +61 427 373 857
E ali.oshea@vicinity.com.au

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