Campus style village under way in Kensington

Brendan Rees

Construction of a “village precinct” comprising a landscaped courtyard, an outdoor pool, and retail shops is well under way as part of a build-to-rent project in Kensington.

The $315 million complex at the corner of Macaulay Rd and Stubbs St will consist of six buildings across eight storeys with construction expected to be completed in the middle of 2024.

Melbourne developer Local Residential is behind the project, which will provide 477 apartments, which includes an Impact Housing initiative, contributing 33 social and affordable homes through a partnership with the Women’s Property Initiatives, with homes dedicated to women over 55 experiencing or at risk of homelessness.

The build-to-rent model gives renters more security and the promise of better service including allowing pets, no third-party real estate agents, and a lease on the renters’ terms.

Construction, which is being undertaken by Hacer Group, is gathering pace with the project achieving a “topping out” phase, celebrating the successful completion of the structural phase of a project. 



To mark the occasion on November 27, Local’s founders and co-CEOs Matt Berg and Dan McLennan joined the City of Melbourne’s Lord Mayor Sally Capp, and key Local stakeholders from Macquarie Bank, NAB, Hacer Group and Women’s Property Initiatives for a celebratory get-together.

“At a time when we’re facing housing challenges, Melbourne sorely needs more quality homes in well-connected communities that also provide residential security for tenants,” Mr Berg said. “We are extremely proud of these partnerships and look forward to seeing the transformative impact of these housing initiatives on our communities.”


Dan McLennan and I set out with a vision to not just build apartments, but to build homes where families thrive and neighbourhoods flourish. We are committed to creating sustainable, inclusive spaces that stand the test of time.


There will also be nine specialist disability accommodation homes delivered by Home in Place, and affordable accommodation for key workers.

Once complete, the “campus style village precinct” will feature a shared landscaped internal courtyard providing a communal link between the buildings. It will also comprise 461.5 square metres of retail offerings along Macaulay Rd designed to activate the street frontage.

Cr Capp said the project was exciting, noting not only would it cater to Kensington’s booming population but be a “valuable asset” to the community.

“Build-to-rent offers exciting lifestyle options for residents, with this build delivering private dining rooms, a gym, pool and wellness zone, cinema and more. We can’t wait to see residents flock to Local: Kensington,” she said.

The project will incorporate an eco-friendly design, energy-efficient technologies, and green building materials.

After only two years of operation, Local’s asset portfolio has climbed to more than $1.1 billion and more than 1300 apartments under construction across Melbourne. •


Caption: Lord Mayor Sally Capp joins Local Residential and its partners for a build-to-rent development in Kensington. Photos: Local Residential.

John Buncle

John Buncle

February 14th, 2024 - Felicity Jack
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