Australia Post shifting base to Melbourne's hipster fringeAn impression of the new Australia Post HQ to be built at Burnley, in Melbourne’s inner east.

Australia Post shifting base to Melbourne's hipster fringe

Australia Post will move from its long-standing national headquarters on Bourke Street in the Melbourne CBD to a $450 million building, still to be constructed, at Burnley, on the city’s eastern fringe.

It is understood the decision to move to the fast-growing tech neighbourhood was ticked off by the Lucio Di Bartolomeo-led board this week following a lengthy process by the national postal carrier to consider its future accommodation.

The new 35,000sq m headquarters on Swan Street will be developed by ASX-listed Charter Hall, the country’s largest owner and manager of commercial property, and busy local developer PDG. Australia Post, which occupies about 40,000sq m across two locations in the CBD, will occupy almost all of the new building.

The Burnley shift will surprise some after the closely watched process had narrowed the field to three options: a CBD site to be developed by Mirvac; a move to Richmond, near Burnley, in a PDG proposal backed by Dexus; or another inner-city site in North Melbourne, also under Charter Hall’s control.

But it was the wild card entry that succeeded, with the site at 480 Swan Street previously put forward by Charter Hall as a potential home for Bunnings’ headquarters.

Australia Post could have also opted to remain in its present home a block from State Parliament at the top of Bourke Street, at the Southern Cross West Tower which is co-owned by Brookfield and Blackstone. Its tenancy expires there in late 2024.

The move to the Burnley site will take Australia Post into the heart of a thriving tech and creative district in the inner east, across suburbs including Burnley, Richmond and Cremorne. As well as its frontage to trendy Swan Street, the site backs on to the Burnley railway station and is close to the CityLink toll road.

Companies moving into the area include Domain, Seek, Uber, Reece, Tesla, MYOB and Walt Disney. Bunnings became the latest big corporate player to choose the neighbourhood, striking a deal last year with ASX-listed Growthpoint to take up lodgings in an office tower at 570 Swan Street.

Australia Post finalised its decision as it awaits the arrival of its next chief executive, Woolworths supply chain boss Paul Graham, following the untimely exit of Christine Holgate. Holding the fort until September when Mr Graham starts work is acting chief executive Rodney Boys.

It is understood the decision to move to Melbourne’s hipster fringe is being relayed to Australia Post city workers on Friday.

Comment has been sought from Australia Post.

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