Brisbane growth areas – Brett Warren

Brett Warren is a buyers agent and he has to keep up with developments in Brisbane that will lead to property growth.  He tells us about 2 that he has found.
Kevin:  My next guest is Brett Warren from Metropole Property Strategists in Brisbane. Brett recently caught up with Rachel Crowley from the Brisbane Airport Corporation.
Brett, thanks for your time. Tell me what you learned when you spoke to Rachel.
Brett:  Thanks, Kevin. Good to be with you. It was an interesting discussion. A couple of months ago, I saw an article that mentioned that Eagle Farm/Pinkenba precinct was going to be the fastest growing precinct outside of the CBD in the next 15 years. I obviously knew the second airport was getting in there, but I was really surprised with the amount of work that’s actually going on out there.
Kevin:  What sort of work is there? What do you think it means for Brisbane’s development?
Brett:  Firstly, with a second runway, there are some big things happening there. I think there are four Chinese airlines from all over China that have actually signed up to get on the runway and actually bring more people into Brisbane.
As you know, migration and things like that bring a lot of students to the area, and with Brisbane and particularly Queensland being very tourist-orientated, that’ll bring a lot of the working class from China into those precincts from over there, as well.
Kevin:  Was Rachel able to give you an idea about the timeframe for the new runway?
Brett:  I think it’s another two or three years away. It’s still looking like a bit of a sandpit at the moment; there’s still a little bit of a way to go. But interestingly enough, there have already been a few flights from China that are starting to test it out. It’s pretty early days, but it’s been fairly positive so far.
Kevin:  What other industry, apart from the airport or the airlines, are we going to be seeing out in that area?
Brett:  There are another two hotels that are going up there at the moment. Ibis is opening shortly. There’s another kind of DFO type of shopping precinct that’s going on out there, and probably the most interesting thing is the precinct for the auto mall, which is a number of cars that have signed up out there to get out there and sell cars, obviously. Mark Skaife designed a 2.8 km test track, and you can actually drive your car around there rather than driving on the road. I called it a racetrack, which she wasn’t too happy about.
Kevin:  has that been built already, or is it in planning?
Brett:  I think if you were out there at the moment – I was actually out there today – they’re actually clearing that area at that moment. It’s right in that central location, so very early days out there yet.
Kevin:  What other shopping facilities are we seeing? As you head towards the airport, there’s a lot of shopping already there. What further development are they planning?
Brett:  Obviously, you have your 24-hour Woolworths and things like that. I think it was called Bargain in a Box or something. It’s a similar kind of proposition to the DFO, where there’s a lot of that retail shopping, cheap labels and things like that where people can flock to.
Kevin:  Of course, Hendra is very close to that area. Hendra and Ascot are both good suburbs with high medians. What’s the word about the suburbs a little further out? You mentioned Pinkenba as a classic example. These are the suburbs that are still very affordable. What are they predicting in terms of price growth?
Brett:  That’s going to significantly help as well. Obviously, the Hendras and the Ascots being halfway between the airport and the CBD are probably going to get the bulk of that growth. But again, it’s another major employment hub. I think in that 10- or 15-year period, jobs are going to grow from about 22,000 to about 50,000.
It’s another key employment hub. People’s incomes will be significantly better, and they’ll want to live close to work. So those areas are definitely ones to watch as well.
Kevin:  Brett, as well as looking at the airport, I understand you’ve also been looking at the RBH area around the hospital there. What’s happening there? What have you found out?
Brett:  Yes, absolutely. Obviously, the Showgrounds development has well and truly kicked off now, but if you look going past the hospital now, you’ll see a bit of a hole in the ground.
But a lot of our hospitals are not merely hospitals anymore. They’re really expanding and becoming quite large employment hubs with research capacities, age care facilities, and those types of things. So, it’s not just about the hospital anymore.
I think nearly two thirds of our jobs in the next ten years are going to be in healthcare, age care, hospital care, things like that. So, those four or five big hospitals around the CBD are becoming vitally important as employment hubs.
Kevin:  What about Herston, close in to the hospital there? What’s that like as a suburb in terms of investment potential?
Brett:  Yes, absolutely. Herston continually flies under the radar. It’s a small boutique suburb, excellent walkability. You obviously have the hospital there, you have nice green space as well, and being so close to the CBD, the busway gets you in there, but it’s quite easy to walk in there, as well. I think it’s one that gets under the radar a lot of the times.
Kevin:  We’ve seen a lot of unit development around there, particularly around the Showgrounds. Is there more slated for that area?
Brett:  Depending on which area you’re in, one side of the Showgrounds there, there’s that has obviously a fair bit going on. But if you’re looking to buy in those areas, you should really stick to those true residential pockets. There will be further development there, but they’re not going to be the 300 or 400 apartments and things like that; it’ll just be the small scale. And land is still quite valuable there, so I’d be sticking to those areas if I could.
Kevin:  Brett, thank you very much for your time.
Brett:  Yes, Kevin, it’s been great, too. Thanks very much.

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