Property Australia

Big build-to-rent

Karen Jamal Karen Jamal September 28, 2021

Greystar and Fender Katsalidis have gained the green light for Australia’s largest build-to-rent development, with 625 units ahead in Melbourne’s South Yarra.


  Why we love this project:

  • The project will enhance Australia’s housing diversity and resident amenity, with Greystar the largest operator of apartments in the United States, managing more than 748,000 units and around US$45.1 billion of assets under management.
  • Around 970 jobs will be created during the construction phase, and another 150 further jobs through the office, retail and on-site management components post-completion.
  • A new pedestrian laneway leading to South Yarra train station will connect residents to Melbourne’s CBD in just two stops.


“This purposeful design will not only deliver a best-in-class build-to-rent experience to consumers with expertly managed apartments, workspaces and abundant amenity areas, but it will also introduce an innovative new flexible living typology to Australian renters,” says Greystar’s managing director in Australia, Chris Key.

“While build-to-rent is an emerging housing product in Australia, we believe it is simply a matter of time before this residential sector gains a foothold as a primary investment allocation for institutional investors in the Australian market,” Key adds.

The proposal includes two towers over a combined basement, with ground level retail that will activate a pedestrian through-link.

The first 30-storey Yarra Street tower will feature 382 build-to-rent apartments and 2,000 sqm of commercial office space. The second 21-storey tower on Claremont Street will provide 243 fully furnished, flexible living apartments.

The towers will be designed by Fender Katsalidis, famed for its work on Mona in Hobart and Merdeka 118 in Kuala Lumpur, set to become the world’s second tallest tower.

James Pearce, Fender Katsalidis’ director, says the architectural design will “allow Greystar to operate numerous services and provide a high-quality living experience for its residents”.

The podium design will enhance the pedestrian experience for the entire community while the two slender towers above will maximise residents’ views.

Greystar acquired the two adjoining properties on Yarra and Claremont Streets in February 2020, with this development capitalising on two of the last remaining development sites of scale in the sought-after Forrest Hill Precinct.

The local area has an abundance of retail, food and entertainment offerings, especially along Toorak Road and Chapel Street, that add to the desirability of the neighbourhood.

“This build-to-rent project is an important step in Greystar’s strategic vision of unlocking complex development sites to bring high-quality housing options to a broader spectrum of the rental population,” Key concludes.

290921 - Project of the Week - Greystar 1

290921 - Project of the Week - Greystar 3