State Development Corporation and White & Partners Sydney have this week lodged a development application for what would be known as ‘Toowong Town Centre’, a new $450 million mixed-use precinct.
Located on the corner of High Street and Sherwood Road, Toowong Town Centre is a 9,000sqm site that would accommodate a range of amenities activating the centre from early morning until late at night.
A mix of uses that are proposed includes retail, restaurants, bars, cafes, office, residential, leisure facilities as well as a cinema, childcare, gym and medical centre.
Designed by Nettleton Tribe, the development supersedes a previously approved Stockland application which was for a 3 tower concept. The new design includes only two towers and creates more space to open the site to the natural environment providing more public realm space.
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- Towers: 2
- Storeys: Residential tower – 25, office tower – 20, theatre – 4
- Podiums: High Street – 4-5 storeys, Sherwood Road – 4 storeys
- Basements: 3 levels
- Total number of dwellings: 145
• 3 bedrooms: 31
• 2 bedrooms: 89
• 1 bedroom: 25
- Number of theatres: 5
- Floor area: Retail: 6,367sqm, theatre: 2,522sqm, commercial: 24,265sqm
- Site cover: Approx. 50%
- Plaza areas: Sherwood Road: 1,500sqm, High Street: 2,599sqm, total: 4,059sqm
- Public accessible space: 4,904sqm
- Landscaping: 10.1% site area
- Parking spaces: Residential: 233, retail & theatre: 305, commercial: 305, total: 843
- Basement parking: 606
- Podium parking: 237
- Vehicle access: Jephson Street – cars & heavy service vehicles, Sherwood Road – cars & vans
According to the Local Government Infrastructure Plan, one Urban Common is required to be built in the Toowong Major Centre area and provides an “indicative” rather than “specific” location for the Toowong Urban Common.
As a result, designers have provided 6 options for the location of the Toowong Urban Common with a recommended ‘Option 1’ located across from the site, in front of Toowong Village shopping centre as the preferred option, being the only option that can achieve compliance with both the Neighbourhood plan and the Local Government Infrastructure Plan.
State Development Corporation said it had been looking for a major development site with White & Partners Sydney for five years and when the opportunity came to purchase the site from Stockland, knew this was the perfect location.
“We have developed four projects in the western corridor and understand the Toowong area very well.
“Toowong Village is a successful and well-managed centre and we are not trying to compete with this. We’re creating a completely different offer and an entirely new streetscape for Toowong,” State Development Corporation’s Managing Director Ross McKinnon said.
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“The site was one of the first Woolworths supermarkets in Queensland, opening in 1956.
“Most of the 150m frontage to High Street has been a blank concrete wall for more than 60 years. We now have the chance to create a whole new image for High Street and Sherwood Road.
“Inspiration for the design has come from one of the greatest outdoor shopping centres in the world, The Grove Shopping Centre in Los Angeles which incorporates the best characteristics of a high street in the one development.
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Brisbane has a similar climate to Los Angeles, and we believe the open street theme along with the open-air plaza is the perfect combination to enhance the existing Toowong area.
“Now more than ever, Toowong needs a heart — a civic plaza to give the suburb a focal point the neighbourhood and community can identify with,” Mr McKinnon said.
The open-air plaza will include a water feature that converts to a stage area. The plaza will be used for outdoor dining and food festivals, small concerts, community and special events. The plaza also allows continued easy access to the train station, bus stops and Toowong Village.
“We see the plaza as being an ever-changing meeting area — an iconic location that changes from day to night, week to week, and season to season,” Mr McKinnon said.
More than 50 per cent of the site will be dedicated to public space, including open-air plazas and community meeting areas where locals can take advantage of Brisbane’s sub-tropical climate and lifestyle.
The retail component can be accessed directly from High Street, Sherwood Road and Jephson Street, providing easy street-level entry to the property. The development design will encourage pedestrians to use the internal plazas and walkways as access, linking Sherwood Road and High Street to Jephson Street, Toowong train station and the bus stop.
The mixed-use development will offer customers a 24/7 lifestyle where they can live, work and play in the one area.
“Many inner-city locations either have too much residential or too much office space. High residential areas are often quiet during the day when people go to work, and similarly office areas tend to become ghost towns on weekends,” Mr McKinnon said.
“The mix of retail, office, residential, entertainment and the services we are proposing should provide a strong and active development.
“We have been working closely with Council over the past six months through the DesignSMART process.
“Our plans include upgrades to High Street with the building set back further from the street, allowing for a dedicated bus lane for the busy Toowong bus stop. Allowing buses to stop in front of our development without blocking the two inbound lanes will alleviate traffic in the area, especially during peak hour.
“An upgrade to the High Street and Sherwood Road intersection is also proposed to improve traffic flow,” Mr McKinnon said.
“If the DA is approved, our next step will be to seek expressions of interest from commercial and retail tenants.”
Timing of construction activities has not yet been confirmed as the development is subject to regulatory approval and commercial interest.
For more information about Toowong Town Centre, visit www.toowongtowncentre.com.au/
The development application for this project, available to view on Brisbane City Council’s planning & development online is A005434525.