THE South Australian Government last week announced that the first contracts to build apartments and three-storey townhouses in the $1 billon Bowden development have been signed, with construction expected to commence by the end of the year.
ACDEV Pty Ltd, Rossdale Homes, Scott Salisbury Homes and Rivergum Homes have been announced as the first four successful developers.
It follows a three-month process by the Urban Renewal Authority (URA) and the Bowden Design Review Panel that aimed to ensure the highest architectural standards are met.
Housing and Urban Development Minister Patrick Conlon said the announcement marked a major step in the delivery of the Bowden project, and for the newly-created URA.
"The quality and quantity of offers we received from the industry was fantastic and these four preferred developers excelled with their combined design expertise, development experience and reputation," he said.
"We have taken significant steps to ensure that Bowden is the best development it can be to show buyers and also the property sector the benefits of higher-density living."
ACDEV Pty Ltd and Rossdale Homes were the successful purchasers of the first serviced 'super lots' on Seventh Street and will each build three-storey apartment complexes. Scott Salisbury Homes and Rivergum Homes have secured serviced lots on Sixth Street to build three-storey terrace homes.
Design plans will be publicly revealed from October 2012 when off-the-plan sales opportunities are officially released to the market.
The government said the developers will continue to be guided by the six-member Bowden Design Review Panel, which consists of top local architects under the chairmanship of renowned Sydney architect Keith Cottier.
URA Chief Executive Fred Hansen said buyers can expect excellent designs from the four selected developers, who will be required to adhere to a robust set of design guidelines.
"This is the first step in an ambitious program. We will work with the development industry through each stage to design new ways of showcasing higher-density living, in particular as the project moves towards incorporating retail and public spaces."
The next residential land release as part of Stage 1 will be released to the industry around August, with purchaser submissions to again be assessed and guided by the URA and Bowden Design Review Panel.
The Bowden development spans 16 hectares and is South Australia's first large-scale, higher-density urban development. Ultimately, more than 2,400 homes will be built with approximately 3,500 new residents over 15 years.
More information is available from the Bowden Urban Village website at <http://www.lifemoreinteresting.com.au/>.