How Erskineville Has Changed

Peter O'Meagher 27 Oct 2012

Independent research group RP Data reports that apartments in Erskineville have increased in value by an average of 7% per annum over the past five years compared to the City of Sydney Council average of 4.7%.

The suburb’s renaissance is set to continue with a showpiece residential community of 302 apartments and 16 Torrents Title terraces to be built on a 1.6-ha site.

A cool name to match the design
Leighton Properties and joint venture partner LaSalle Investment Management are paying tribute to the suburb by naming the development Erko – the colloquial name for Erskineville.

Having won the competition for the site in July 2011, SJB Architects have worked with Council and the community to refine the design, ensuring it maintained the fine-grain character of Erskineville.

“Ensuring the project will result in a functional and sustainable community was central to our vision,” said Leighton Properties National Head of Residential, Gavin Tonnet. “The established character of Erskineville is fascinating, with a genuine main street village, quiet and charming streets of character cottages, and significant parks.

“Erskineville’s eclectic village feel combined with the brilliant transport options and accessibility to Sydney University, Newtown, the city and the airport make it broadly appealing to an extraordinary rich demographic of ages, household makeups, professionals, families and investors alike. Our brief to the designers was to ensure that these unique qualities were not lost and the apartments provided a home-like offering,” Mr Tonnet said.

“Creating great communities is a complex matrix, however we believe that the starting point – like any village – is ensuring that our apartment buildings have broad demographic appeal with comfortable occupation by a cross section of community. Ultimately this results in better socialization, programs and balanced attitudes – and importantly, desirable places to live,” Mr Tonnet said.

The initial stages of Erko contain three 8-level buildings of contemporary symmetry, with clean lines, compact profiles, tapered rooflines and generous street setbacks.

While each has its own identity and street number the buildings are architecturally complementary. All have rendered masonry façades, robust natural finishes and will be sited around a landscaped park that will provide a focal point for a new and vibrant residential community. The terraces will have private courtyards and practical outdoor areas.

The apartments at Erko provide a variety of choice, with a wide selection of studios, one, two and three-bedroom apartments starting from $385,000.

Providing a range of apartment types, making them generally larger than other new apartments in the area with high ceilings and significantly improved storage, were key to the design.  

“We’ve designed each apartment with an emphasis on open-plan living,” said John Pradel from SJB Architects. “Spatial flexibility has been carefully considered, enabling the apartments to be used for various modes of living.

“All apartments are designed to maximize cross-flow ventilation and provide natural cooling and ventilation. However, to suit every occasion, there is ducted reverse cycle air-conditioning.

Allowing pets and including a concept for car sharing are important to Leighton Properties as attractors for a broader, more responsible community.

Public ammenity is paramount

Erko will deliver a high degree of public domain amenity to both existing and new residents, and meet the long planned outcomes envisaged by the City of Sydney. These include public open space, and new roads, cycle paths and footpaths to improve accessibility.

A new public road will connect Macdonald Street to the south and Bridge Street to the north, providing access to pedestrians and cyclists traveling to and from Erskineville village and Erskineville Railway Station.

Erskineville is among Sydney’s most convenient locations, being surrounded by arterial roads, well serviced by buses and trains, and close to Sydney Airport and Sydney’s major universities.

Managing Director of CBRE Residential Project Marketing, David Milton, said proximity to public transport is a key influence in buying real estate in Sydney. “As Erko is just a few minutes walk from the railway station and bus stops, it has increased appeal to buyers,” Mr Milton said.

“Locations where you can do without a car, or at least leave your car at home during the work week, are in higher demand than ever. At Erko you can reach the city by train in a few minutes, so it’s little wonder we have received such strong interest from owner occupiers and investors who recognize the unique opportunity Erko presents.”

Mark Gray, Managing Director of Leighton Properties, said Erko will make a positive contribution to the urban village feel of Erskineville through its public domain, new roads, footpaths and cycleways.

“Erskineville has vibrancy unmatched by many suburbs, attracting residents through its cafes and restaurants, fashion boutiques, and live music scene. Yet there are peaceful green spaces such as the family-friendly

Sydney Park where you can relax, have a picnic, enjoy the play areas and utilise the cycleways and walking tracks,” Mr Gray said.   

There is pent-up demand for accommodation in Erskineville because of lack of new supply. The last significant residential developments in the precinct were Motto in 2008 and Glo in 2005.

“There is a significant shortfall in inner city housing, so Erko will go some way to helping easing demand.” said Matthew Bailey, the Development Director of LaSalle Investment Management. “Leighton has a well deserved reputation for creating thoughtful and sustainable developments at affordable prices.”

An Erko display centre has been established on site at the corner of Bridge and Victoria Streets, which will be open from 1pm to 4pm, Saturday to Wednesday. Appointments can be made on 1800 196 107 or through www.erkoapartments.com.au


For more information


Peter O'Meagher

Senior Development Manager
Phone+61 2 9925 6666
Email Peter O'Meagher

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