A trend to move to inner city hubs might become a permanent way of life, writes David Aubrey.

Aspirations in real estate for owners, investors and renters alike are changing. No different to cars, clothes and food, real estate consumer aspirations are on the move and that commodity’s producer goes with the flow or simply fades away.

For many years Brisbane people aspired to live on the river and developers were happy to pay premium prices for land, knowing they could command premium prices for apartments.

But real estate consumers demanded more than a daytime view; they wanted to live close to interactive social hubs where like-minded people gather to meet, eat, drink and shop in a contemporary setting.

The Gasworks precinct at Newstead is such a hub. Featuring Woolworths, fresh food markets and over 30 speciality stores it provides an enlightened retail experience.

One of Brisbane’s most prolific residential developers, Metro Property Developments—with over 1000 apartments across five projects in the city—were quick off the mark in recognising the lure of living close to a social hub.

The $160 million Newstead Towers at 39 Longland Street will feature 314 apartments over two towers with a multi-million dollar manmade beach, yoga lawn, teppenyaki BBQs and gym providing the ultimate inner city retreat. Metro Property Development managing director Luke Hartman says Newstead Towers’ convenient location just two kilometres from the CBD was a major drawcard.

“As always, location is a key consideration when we acquire sites. Newstead Towers’ prime position is a great example of this,” Hartman says.

“Its established inner-city riverside position and proximity to restaurants, shops and transport offers an attractive proposition for buyers.

“High quality, boutique apartment product in Newstead is undersupplied and there is a demand for style and innovation,” he says.

Urbis associate director Jon Riviera explained why Newstead’s vibrant and expanding retail hub was driving strong growth. “The master-planned Newstead Riverpark is acting as a major catalyst for Newstead and Teneriffe,” Riviera says. “At present, the commercial employment nodes surrounding Newstead are home to 42,000 jobs with a further 38,000 forecast by 2031.”

Energex, Tatts Group and Bank of Queensland have committed to the precinct.

“As new, high-profile firms are attracted to Newstead, the increase in investment into the region and their workforces will form a major driver for the local residential market,” he says. Metro Property Development marketing director Ken Woodley expects Newstead Towers’
mix of one, two and three-bedroom apartments to be popular with buyers.

“Apartments of this size are a high priority for young professional couples and individuals who lead busy lifestyles,” Woodley says. Soon the trend may become a permanent real estate way of life.