PLANS to convert the old Geelong Advertiser building for student accommodation will provide a boost for the resurrection of the city centre, a local commercial real estate agent says.
Gartland Property, Geelong director Michael De Stefano said transforming the office building into a student residence would bring more people into the city.
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CoreLogic this week confirmed the $5 million sale price for the three-storey building which sold last month.
“At the end of the day it’s going to create more activation around that area,” Mr De Stefano said.
“It’s a good synergy with the cinema and those eateries across the road.
“Deakin and their student accommodation has been paramount to the resurrection of the CBD as well. So the more the merrier, I reckon.”
Mr De Stefano said the increase in central Geelong’s student population had worked in combination with the rise in the number of government office workers in the city through the Transport Accident Commission (TAC), WorkSafe and National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) to drive the resurrection of the city centre.
“The more people that frequent the CBD every day is a positive thing,” he said.
“They’re spending more here, they’re eating here. It creates more hype and need for infrastructure and hospitality around that.”
More than 450 university students call central Geelong home in public and private student accommodation centres.
The largest is the 11-storey Brougham House building adjoining the university’s waterfront campus.
The university-owned facility caters for 410 students, while Deakin also converted the landmark T & G Building to provide a home for 33 students in the city.
The 30-room Ryrie Hall was Geelong’s first student residence.