Coalition moves on $6 billion urban development
The Victorian Coalition Government will drive economic activity, productivity and jobs as it confirms funding in today’s Budget to plan the redevelopment of the 23 hectare E-Gate rail yard site in West Melbourne.
The $2 million package will fund a detailed business case and related studies to analyse and assess the potential of the E-Gate site which becomes available for redevelopment from 2014.
Minister for Major Projects Denis Napthine said E-Gate was one of the largest inner-metropolitan sites without a long-term strategic plan for its future use in place.
“This Budget sets out a clear plan to position Victoria to take full advantage of opportunities that will rebuild the state’s finances and secure the future,” Dr Napthine said.
“The E-Gate site has potential to generate economic activity in the order of $6 billion over a 10 to 15 year period and generate thousands of jobs in the construction and planning phases.
“The site has the potential to provide housing for about 12,000 people with office accommodation of 180,000 square metres and retail/community space of 17,000 square metres.
“It is a prime site on the fringe on the CBD that is crying out to be better used. The Coalition Government is putting resources behind preparing the site for a major redevelopment once its current tenants leave in 2014.
“Strategically located at the western edge of the CBD, between key inner-city growth precincts in Docklands and West Melbourne/North Melbourne, E-Gate provides an opportunity for a mixed use urban redevelopment, which would assist in facilitating housing supply growth within Melbourne’s inner-west.
“This funding will prepare a detailed business case assessing the costs and risks of the development and ultimately recommending how the site should be offered to the development industry in order to provide the best result and value for money for Victorians.
“Beyond the railway lines running through it, E-Gate is currently used by Blue Scope/One Steel as a distribution hub and as a maintenance depot for Metro Trains and Yarra Trams.
“The Government believes these current uses are sub-optimal given the prime location of the site and the pressures of finding housing for Melbourne’s growing population.
“As it is these uses constrain urban connectivity in the inner west and prevent key connections between Docklands, North Melbourne and the CBD being realised.
“The Government is commencing a business case process to explore the best use of the site when the tenant leases expire in 2014. This is a responsible and necessary approach.
“E-Gate is an exciting project that will transform the West Melbourne and Docklands area, provide new housing and create thousands of jobs during its construction,” Dr Napthine said.Background
E-Gate is a VicTrack-owned site of approximately 23 hectares named because it is located at gate “E” of the Melbourne rail yards. It is in West Melbourne, 2 kilometres from the CBD and is bounded by Moonee Ponds Creek, Footscray Road, Dudley Street and the North Melbourne rail corridor. .
Two primary users currently occupy the majority of the E-Gate site. BlueScope and One Steel operate a hub for the distribution of steel by rail and road to customers in Victoria and interstate (the Pacific National lease at the eastern end) and Metro Trains Melbourne and Yarra Trams occupy the site for a variety of logistics, maintenance and administration purposes on the western portion.
The site will become available for redevelopment following the relocation of these tenancies, with the expiry of the existing VicTrack lease to Pacific National (subleased to Bluescope and OneSteel) scheduled for November 2014. All parties have been advised that this lease will not be reviewed.