DEVELOPER Graeme Rodger has increased his slice of the Warrnambool housing market with the purchase of 15.3 hectares in the city’s north for about $5 million.
The Whites Road site, which has a planning permit for 139 lots, is near several other parcels of former farm land Mr Rodger is developing or awaiting approval.
The site was sold via tender after a national advertising campaign by Ray White Commercial of Ballarat.
Mr Rodger said yesterday he hoped to have blocks on the market by February.
“The purchase is under contract,” he said.
“This land has all the approvals and when the necessary infrastructure is done there should be blocks on the market with titles early next year.
“I see Warrnambool as a good growth area and a safe place to invest in.
“I’ve probably developed 450 blocks in the past 10 to 12 years.
“However, the delay in getting approvals is far too long,” Mr Rodger said.
“Councillors have been saying how 3000 blocks of new residential land have been brought forward, but this is only in structure plans.
“Developers face about eight years in getting planning approval and the state government must take a lot of the blame. Warrnambool is still one of the dearest places in the state to buy housing land because we can’t get it approved.”
Ray White agent Phillip Lee told The Standard yesterday there had been strong interest by developers from as far as Brisbane and from the retirement village industry.
“Warrnambool is considered a strong growth area,” he said. “I think there’s been a good sale result.”
When the tender process opened earlier this month Mr Lee indicated it could fetch about $6m, based on recent housing land values.
The Standard understand’s Mr Rodger’s offer was below that mark. An initial 11 lots carved into the new estate near Aberline Road were not included in the sale.