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Commercial Market Update – Gold Coast Cityscope April 2021

Gold Coast Cityscope

The latest research from Gold Coast Cityscope shows property sale figures have significantly decreased over the past three months. Sales recorded in the three months to March 2021 recorded 25 sales for a total of $64.3 million. Of this, $4.6 million was for commercial, $1.9 million was for commercial strata, $40.8 million was for retail, $5.1 million was for retail strata and $11.8 million was for other.

In comparison, the three months to December 2020 recorded 53 sales for a total of $106.8 million. Of this, $54.3 million was for commercial, $15.8 million was for commercial strata, $11.9 million was for retail, $15 million was for retail strata and $9.7 million was for other.

The latest data raises the 12-month total to over $371.7 million, only $7.4 million less than the previous 12-month period.

The table below shows sales recorded for the past eight updates of Gold Coast Cityscope:

Gold Coast Cityscope

The most significant sales recorded this quarter together totalled over $41.1 million.

Bunnings Robina has been sold for $28.05 million to David Feldman Developments Pty Ltd. Jacob Swan, Sam Hatcher and Nick Willis of JLL negotiated the sale, which represented an initial yield of 5.49% on a passing income of $1,540,531 (n). The 12,803 sqm warehouse was purpose built for Masters in March 2014 (Masters closed in late 2016) and converted for use by Bunnings 2018 (opened December 2018). The property includes car parking for 321 vehicles. Original development cost, $15.75 million.

Primewest Property Income Fund, an open-ended unlisted fund, has purchased Bluebird Early Education Centre in Robina for $7.25 million through Perpetual Corporate Trust Limited. The sale represented an initial yield of 5.86% on a passing income of $425,000 (n). The single-storey child care centre was purpose built in 2004 for Smarter Kids Kindergarten and was recently refurbished.

A Gold Coast investor has purchased 86 Bundall Road, prior to auction, for $5.8 million. The property includes a two-storey 2,017 sqm showroom/office building fronting Bundall Road and a single-storey, 90 sqm warehouse to the rear. Steven King and Marlon Crawford of Colliers International Gold Coast negotiated the sale.

Gold Coast Cityscope

Properties currently listed for sale include:

  • 8-10 Windmill Street, Southport – a large warehouse to the rear with a ground floor showroom and first floor office space to the front. The property includes undercover car parking for 25 vehicles. Total building area around 1,645 sqm. For sale with an asking price of $4.25 million; agent, Corwells (Cody Hart).
  • 3 Beach Road, Surfers Paradise – a 769 sqm vacant block of land. For sale with an asking price of $3.95 million; agent, Cushman & Wakefield Gold Coast (Richard McCouaig and Ed Howard).
  • 46 Scottsdale Drive, Robina – a 4,719 sqm vacant block of land; agent, CBRE Gold Coast (Tania Moore and Mark Witheriff).
  • 25 Griffith Street, Coolangatta – a two-storey building with a ground floor retail shop and a three-bedroom, two-bathroom residence upstairs. Building area, 348 sqm. The property includes a swimming pool and two-car garage to the rear. For sale with an asking price of $2.9 million; agent, Tsimos Commercial Real Estate (John Black).

Properties currently under contract (conditionally or unconditionally) include:

  • 287 Scottsdale Drive, Robina – a 6,985 sqm vacant block of land, part of the M1 Business Precinct. Under contract; agent, CBRE Gold Coast (Mark Witheriff and David Corke).
  • 9 Energy Circuit, Robina – a 4,781 sqm vacant block of land, part of the M1 Business Precinct. Under contract; agent, CBRE Gold Coast (Mark Witheriff and David Corke).
  • 82 Griffith Street, Coolangatta – a 266 sqm, two-storey office building. Under conditional contract; agent, DJS Stringer Commercial (David Stringer).
  • Home & Life Centre Robina – a 14,782 sqm home and retail precinct. Under contract; agents, JLL Brisbane and Savills Brisbane.


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Subdued Office Occupancy Underpins Need To Support CBD


The latest results of the Property Council’s office occupancy survey show that Brisbane’s CBD activity levels have remained flat during April, as the Property Council ramps up efforts to encourage workers to return to the city.

The survey revealed Brisbane’s CBD occupancy level had stagnated at just over 60 per cent in April, marking the fifth consecutive month of little movement in the return to workplaces.

The Property Council’s Queensland Deputy Executive Director, Jen Williams, explained that while flexibility will continue to be a major feature of workplaces and there remains a small risk of future lockdowns, there is still a long way to go until the CBD reaches the level of occupancy anticipated in the new ‘normal’.

“Activity levels in Brisbane’s office buildings not only affect workplaces and office landlords, but the thousands of small businesses and retailers that rely on high levels of foot traffic to turn a profit.

“All businesses in the CBD are interrelated and largely reliant on office workers. From dry cleaners, to take away outlets, to electronic scooter companies, everyone relies on the consistent foot traffic that workers generate.

“As a direct result of the state’s success in tackling the health pandemic and the relatively low level of restrictions remaining, Brisbane was an early mover in the return of workers to the CBD.

“Unfortunately, we have seen the number of workers heading back into the CBD stagnate over the past five months. To position Brisbane for the future and capitalise on the generations of investment that have gone before, we must break the habits of COVID and get our people back together.

“In other parts of the world where employees have been forced to work from home for longer, businesses are desperate to get back to the office, as they have seen their productivity stagnate.

“With the likes of Google and Apple announcing major return to the office plans once the vaccine rollout allows, Brisbane and Australian businesses will risk losing their first mover advantage if they don’t get their teams back to together.

“This is why the Property Council is working with Brisbane City Council on a campaign to not only attract workers back into the office, but to ensure they make the most of what local retailers, cafes, restaurants, and bars have to offer.

“The State Government and Brisbane City Council’s Brisbane Holiday Dollars initiative is welcome recognition of the important role the CBD plays in contributing to the broader state and economy.

“While much is being done, there is still a long way to go until CBD activity levels return to ‘normal’. The Property Council is keen to work across all levels of government and industry to bring activity back to our city centre.”


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Major new tenant for Brisbane’s fast growing Airport City

Airport City

The list of tenants at Brisbane Airport (BNE) will soon include the world’s largest distributor for home-brewing brands such as Still Spirits, Mangrove Jacks, and Grainfather following the sod-turning ceremony for a new facility at the gateway.

Bevie’s 2,600sqm state-of-the-art unit will be located within a Warehousing Industrial Duplex Facility on Grevillea Place in Export Park.

Martin Ryan, Brisbane Airport Corporation’s executive general manager for commercial, joined John van Rensburg, CEO and president of Bevie, and more than 20 Bevie delegates on site to mark the commencement of construction.

Airport City

Van Rensburg noted that a number of Bevie delegates were able to take advantage of the trans-Tasman travel bubble and fly in from New Zealand for the event.

He enthused: “We are looking forward to calling Brisbane Airport home to our soon-to-be constructed, custom facility, and I cannot wait to see the look on everyone’s face when we move in at the end of the year.

“Our existing facility in Banyo has served us well but providing our team with a modern home will allow us to serve our retail partners across Australia more efficiently.”

Ryan said the addition of Bevie is a perfect example of BNE’s evolving Airport City and our ability to attract non-aviation related businesses to Brisbane Airport.

“Bevie’s arrival is very exciting for all of us at Brisbane Airport as it diversifies the mix of industries we have here on site,” noted Ryan.

“We have a number of exciting projects underway and a property assets portfolio exceeding A$1.7 billion. Bevie is a part of BNE’s exciting future, which includes the opening of the BNE Auto Mall in 2024.”

The remaining portion of Brisbane Airport’s new Warehousing Industrial Duplex Facility is a 1,900sqm site that is still available for lease.

“These two units will complete the last piece of real estate available on Grevillea Place, but we have plenty more sites available for everyone’s needs,” added Ryan.

The project is generating more than 30 construction jobs and is expected to be completed by December 2021.


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Cromwell Lands Former Flight Centre HQ


Brisbane-based fund manager Cromwell will add the former Flight Centre headquarters at 545 Queen Street in Brisbane to its managed portfolio.

Settlement is imminent for the $117.5 million acquisition being sold by Axis Capital, which bought it in 2017 for $70 million, in a deal that requires Foreign Investment Review Board approval.

The 13,300sq m, A-grade office building is located on a 2735sq m parcel of land at the entrance to the Brisbane CBD’s ‘Golden Triangle’ and has undergone an extensive refurbishment programme.

Hamish Wehl, Cromwell’s head of retail funds management, said the property fit its target profile with 88 per cent of income derived from the federal government, as well as listed or multinational tenant-customers

“The current interest rate environment has made things challenging for investors searching for opportunities that meet their income needs.

“Cromwell is actively seeking additional assets that will help DPF meet its objectives and benefit unitholders even further,” Wehl said.

DPF, which started in 2013, owns seven office and retail assets—in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and ACT—outright and has exposure to a further three with a total value of just over $1 billion.

Wehl said the fund had been strongly supported by local investors who are paid a monthly dividend averaging 5.8 per cent a year.

The transaction was negotiated by CBRE’s Peter Chapple, Bruce Baker, Flint Davidson and Stuart McCann.

“We have seen a strong increase in buyer demand for high quality, multi-let Brisbane office towers, with long-term investors backing that there will be a flight to quality as tenants seek to upgrade to prime grade CBD and metropolitan office assets,” Baker said.

Brisbane’s renowned Golden Triangle has been subject to a number of high-profile transactions in recent years.

The tower, at 410 Queen Street, sold for $53.5 million to local development and investment group PGA Properties early last year.

Dexus and Canada’s CPP Investment Board also recently sold Brisbane’s 10 Eagle Street office tower for $285 million to Brisbane-based investment manager Marquette Properties.


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