This article was published by The Age on October 29, 2013.
It also appeared in print on October 30, 2013 (click here to view this and similar articles).
A new 193-metre skyscraper has been given the green light for Southbank after being signed off by Planning Minister Matthew Guy as a "tower of investment".
Mr Guy said the new tower “will help transform a currently underutilised site in central Southbank”.
The tower is at the maximum height recommended for the site and comes at a time of growing concern about the number of skyscrapers approved in the city centre.
The 61-storey apartment building is expected to house around 600 residents in addition to shared recreational facilities like car and bicycle spaces, a gym and a barbecue area. It will also boast café, restaurant and retail spaces at street level.
Senior associate and project manager Eugene Chieng with architect firm Hayball, that designed the tower, said it was designed to meet planning controls for the area.
“At the time it (the project) was lodged, the planning scheme indicates a 160-metre height control with a discretionary 20 per cent increase in maximum height,” Mr Chieng said.
“In response to this, one part of the tower is tapered back at the top in attempt to relieve physical bulk on City Road."
Lord Mayor Robert Doyle, who was not available for comment, opposed a 238-metre tower in nearby Clarke St in February on the grounds it was “more than twice” the height outlined in the Southbank Structure Plan.
Construction on the tower is likely to begin next year, with completion expected in 2017.