The wrecking ball has well and truly started to swing in Newcastle’s old CBD mall.
Work on Iris Capital’s $700 million EastEnd commercial and residential precinct is proceeding on schedule, the developer says, with an announcement regarding the first retailers to move into the redeveloped site expected soon.
The former David Jones carpark on the corner of King and Perkins streets has been demolished and steel supports have been set up to protect the heritage facades of Washington House on Hunter Street and Fabric House on Wolfe Street, ahead of their demolition.
Asbestos found at the former David Jones site was removed soon after the project started – though it’s understood the developer expected to find some asbestos given the age of the buildings.
The finished first stage of the development will include an 11 storey tower on the corner of King and Perkins streets which will contain 108 apartments.
Washington House is expected to be replaced with a 10 storey, 47-apartment complex, while 57 units will be built on the Fabric House site.
There will also be two levels of basement parking.
After the demolition work is complete, construction of the stage one buildings will start in the last quarter of this year and are expected to be finished by mid 2020.
“Stage one of the four stage development includes 212 apartments that will transform the east end into a world-class destination, and our future development will see it reach its full potential,” Iris Capital managing director and CEO Sam Arnaout said.
“We expect to be in a position shortly to announce some exciting news on occupants of the stage one retail space.”
The revamp of the old mall is ultimately expected to result in about 500 units, landscaped laneways and outdoor areas and retail space.
The Joint Regional Planning Panel approved the first stage of the project in December.
The Newcastle Herald reported at the time that the panel had also given concept approval to all four stages of the redevelopment.