It's taken more than a quarter of a century of planning, but the first house is about to go up on the $10 million Mervue Estate next to Warrnambool's golf course.
The joint venture between the club, developers and Robert and Robin Coffey has almost sold out with just five of the 48 lots left.
Falk and Co sales manager Gary Attrill said the development, which was held up by protracted planning issues, had sold quicker than expected.
"It took us 10 years to get town planning approval because it's a sensitive area," Mr Attrill said.
The 21-acre housing estate is partly on golf club land - a 77-acre parcel of former farmland and wetlands which was originally earmarked for an extension of the golf course.
The club had been seeking the land since the late 1980s so it could extend its existing golf course to a championship 36-hole country club-style layout.
However, Mr Attrill said a golf course extension was never feasible.
In 1992, Warrnambool council purchased the land on behalf of the golf club and, under terms of the contract, it was sold back to the club in 2002 at 1992 prices for about $320,000.
In 2006, it was rezoned from farming to residential.
The land extends along the coast to the knackery and much of it is taken up by wetlands.
Ludeman Real Estate director Mark Dwyer said the titles for the first stage of the development had arrived on Friday while titles for the second stage were expected within the next month.
"Building is just about to start," Mr Dwyer said.
He said there would be no townhouses within the development, and all houses would be on an average-sized block of 1000 square metres.
Mr Attrill said there had been a lot of interest in the development since the blocks went onto the market two years ago with 12 sold on the first day alone.
"It's sold really quick," he said.
"It's exceeded expectations by heaps.
"The developers thought it would take five years to do but we've done it in two."
The estate is close to a reserve and includes a footbridge over the Merri River to the rail trail.
The estate is tucked in behind the sand dunes near Shelly Beach, but there is no direct access to the beach except through the golf course, Mr Attrill said.
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