Less is more in the revamped plan for stage two of the Gallery Apartments on Rockhampton’s Victoria Parade.
New plans were submitted this week with Rockhampton Regional Council, with developers Wayne Riddell and Andrew Beaumont proposing 15 units, instead of the approved 26 units.
The $10 million-dollar stage two will now be an eight-storey building with 14 three-bedroom units and one four-bedroom penthouse unit.
“Rather than having smaller units we are going to the three bedroom plus, there is that growing demand people want one per floor and more room,” said selling agent Pat O’Driscoll.
The building will be 27 metres high and has been designed to blend in with the existing Gallery stage one building next door.
Each apartment will have an elevator entrance and the layout has been designed to be open plan kitchen/living/dining areas which will extend onto covered balconies facing Victoria Parade.
The interior will be accentuated with luxurious and high-end finishes.
The bedroom at the rear of the two units on level one open onto a private terrace.
The ground floor carpark will be accessed from Quay Ln and there will be a lobby entrance on Victoria Pde.
Mr O’Driscoll said they would not be offering pre-sale before they build.
“We are that confident with the market we are going to just build,” he said.
“There is a growing demand for owner-occupier, this precinct has now evolved into enviably one of the better ones in the regional cities.
“We are at the coalface, we have been involved with this precinct for 15 years and I have never seen anything like it.
“I would expect the way we are running, by the time we start getting the footings out of the ground, we’ll have sold them all.”
Some apartments will be sold off the plans and some will be sold once built.
Gallery stage one has 62 luxury apartments with a high-end restaurant on the ground level which is yet to be leased.
Construction of stage one began in late 2016 and was completed in mid 2018.
Mr Riddell said they were looking to start construction on stage two around June this year, with construction to take around 12 months, for a completion in mid-2021.
“You never know with these projects, by the time you start it you could be in a low and by the time you finish it, it could be in a high, or the other way around… it goes over so many years,” he said.
The standard of the build will also be top-notch, as the developers won’t hold back on quality.
“I am a believer if you pay now, you won’t pay later,” Mr Riddell said.
“It’s like buying a good car, you get a good life out of it, if you buy a cheap car or equipment, you are just going to keep putting your hand in your pocket.”
This will be the fourth project under the partnership of Wayne Riddell and Andrew Beaumont, with Empire Apartment Hotel, Gallery stage one and Salt Apartments at Yeppoon already under their belts.
“It’s all about the right timing and getting people’s confidence, we have built a few developments now,” Mr Riddell said.
“It’s wonderful to have a local developer because they love and live in the town, you know the standards are right,” Mr O’Driscoll said.
Mr Riddell spoke with genuine admiration and praise for his business partner.
“We get along so well, we have a really good understanding, very strong partnership, a lot of trust there,” he said.
“Most of the joint ventures they fall apart because there is untrust and we aren’t greedy, we enjoy the development together.”
Mr O’Driscoll has been in real estate in the Rockhampton region for 40 years and said he had never seen a period where the strength in the market was growing exponentially every month like it was now.
He said COVID-19 had in turn had a positive effect on the CQ region, as demonstrated by the record low vacancy rate.
“Ex-pats living overseas, people moving back, you’ve got people living in Melbourne and Sydney and all of a sudden the regionals look quite attractive and they’ve realised they don’t have to work in an office anymore and they can work remotely,” he said.
“COVID has been an advantage economically for the region and on top of that we are in this perfect scenario where we have all this massive infrastructure coming into the region and all these people coming in and dollars being spent.
“So all these things compound for the positive.”