First residents move in to Australia 108, Melbourne’s tallest building

The first residents are set to move into a new super skyscraper to be crowned Melbourne’s tallest building.

Southbank tower Australia 108 will soar 319 metres into the sky when its construction is complete in two years. But despite its unfinished status, some apartment buyers will receive the keys in coming weeks. 

About one-quarter of the building’s 1100 apartments have recently been completed. And while construction continues on the top 50 floors of the 110-storey tower, those who bought one and two-bedroom units between levels 14 and 30 have been given the green light to move in.

First released to the market in 2014, one-bedroom apartments started at $517,000 and two-bedrooms began at $642,000. 

The building’s luxury apartments, found above level 71, set buyers back substantially more. There are 19 three-bedroom apartments left in the tower, priced from $1,957,000. 

A penthouse sprawling across the entire 100th floor broke the national record for an individual apartment sale in 2015 when it sold to a Chinese businessman for $25 million. When the suite is finished, he is expected to own the highest residential dwelling in the southern hemisphere.

Construction commenced on the Southbank Boulevard site in late 2015. Heavy machinery drilled down a massive 46 metres, with the foundation works taking nine months to complete. Supporting the building are core walls almost two metres thick, and covering its facade are 108 glass panels each weighing up to 300 kilograms. 

“This country hasn’t seen a project like Australia 108 from a sheer numbers perspective,” said Graham Cottam, regional managing director of Multiplex, the firm in charge of the building’s construction.

“If we look at the glass facade alone, all up some 2500 tonnes of glass spanning 47,000 square metres will be used to create the tower’s innovative facade.” 

Handing over the first stage of the building represents a win for developer World Class Global. The company, which has projects in Malaysia and Australia, was reported to have posted a net loss of almost $8.85 million last year. In response, the group said it had not recorded any revenue from the sale of development properties because none of its projects were completed and handed over to purchasers in 2017. 

Chief executive David Ng said more than $872 million in sales had been recorded in Australia 108, with the first handover representing $147 million in revenue. 

The title of Melbourne’s tallest building is currently held by Eureka Tower, which stands 297 metres high.

The sunshine state lays claim to the country’s tallest building, but some have pointed out the Gold Coast’s landmark 323-metre tower Q1 is only the tallest on paper because of its spire.

Regardless, a new proposal announced in May threatens to knock both off their perch. The Royal Society of Victoria has proposed a 330-metre slender skyscraper for a small, triangular wedge of land at the intersection of La Trobe and Victoria Street in Melbourne’s CBD. 

The public can see inside Australia 108 in July as part of the Open House Melbourne program, with architecture firm Fender Katsalidis hosting tours of the site.

Source: Domain