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    The developer behind Geelong’s biggest office towers has revealed a $1 billion plan for more CBD buildings

    Geelong Advertiser | July 21 2021 | Peter Farago

    The developer who’s made the biggest impact to Geelong’s city skyline in decades has unfinished business.

    Quintessential Equity executive chairman Shane Quinn has outlined bold plans for the city, which he says is one of the best places to invest in commercial property due to its affordability and lifestyle opportunities.

    The property group has completed its second project in Geelong, with health insurer GMHBA moving in as anchor tenant at 60 Moorabool St.

    Geelong’s Civic Precinct worksite showing the recently installed steel and cross laminated timber beams. Picture: Alan Barber
    Geelong’s Civic Precinct worksite showing the recently installed steel and cross laminated timber beams. Picture: Alan Barber

    On a tour of the facility, which Mr Quinn said was the first PCA A-grade office built for the private sector in decades, the company’s other project is bursting out of the ground at 137 Mercer St.

    The City of Greater Geelong and Quintessential Equity are partnering in the $200 million civic precinct project, named Wurriki Nyal, with the developer funding a second, separate office, dubbed the QE building, on the site.

    Geelong Civic Precinct artists impressions. Quintessential Equity is the developer in partnership with Geelong's council.
    Geelong Civic Precinct artists impressions. Quintessential Equity is the developer in partnership with Geelong’s council.

    “Council wanted something that was going to represent the UNESCO City of Design designation and giving one of the largest cross-laminated timber buildings in the southern hemisphere is pretty incredible,” Mr Quinn said.

    “And I think as a gateway it really will wrap around that site and as you enter Geelong it show the prosperity and the next evolution of Geelong.”

    Geelong’s Civic Precinct worksite is starting to take shape. Picture: Alan Barber
    Geelong’s Civic Precinct worksite is starting to take shape. Picture: Alan Barber

    Little seems to have changed for the second building, with QE hoping to pre-lease that prior to construction.

    “We’re talking to government about opportunities there We’re hoping we can unlock some state government solution to get it out of the ground,” he said.

    Beyond that, Mr Quinn reveals high ambitions in Geelong.

    Wes Self of GMHBA, Shane Quinn of Quintessential Equity and David Greig of GMHBA. Picture: Alan Barber
    Wes Self of GMHBA, Shane Quinn of Quintessential Equity and David Greig of GMHBA. Picture: Alan Barber

    “We want to do the civic precinct, the QE building and then I want to secure another two office sites and a residential site. So we’re long in Geelong.

    “At the moment we’ve got just over $500 million in projects, but we want to do another $500 million in the next four to five years.”

    Geelong’s Civic Precinct is emerging in Mercer Street. Picture: Alan Barber
    Geelong’s Civic Precinct is emerging in Mercer Street. Picture: Alan Barber

    Mr Quinn said the commitments made by TAC, WorkSafe and NDIA in the city had sparked the growth in the white collar sector.

    “They’re all government buildings. But the government has done its work now and it’s up to the private sector to wrap around that.

    “I think it’s self-fulfilling because any other business or group of solicitors see people in this space and how happy people can be and how easy it is to retain and attract staff, then they’re going to have to be in this space.

    “We think Geelong is in the top two places in the country to invest — here and Adelaide.

    “Because it’s got an abundance of lifestyle but also affordability and they both have expanding white collar employment prospects.

    “If you were a talent coming out of university, you probably had to think about going to Melbourne or Sydney to accelerate your career. That’s not the case anymore.”

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