Building Costs Per Square Metre in Australia – ABS Statistics

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Building Costs Per Square Metre in Australia – ABS Statistics

Cost of Building Detached Single Family Homes
Cost of Building Semi-Detached Townhouses
Cost of Building Apartments/Flats
Major Industrial Projects in Australia
Major Residential Building Projects in Australia

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Building costs in Australia surged to their highest ever since March 2005, with the national Cordell Construction Cost Index (CCCI) formerly known as the Cordell Housing Index Price (CHIP) rising from 149.7 in March 2004 to 160.6 in March 2005,which represents a 7.28% increase over a year. Costs haven’t risen to this level over the 17-year span until March 2021, which recorded a 7.1% increase from the previous year. The CCCI was 163.9 in September 2005 ending up at 318.6 in 2021 of the same month. That’s a 94% rise in residential construction costs since 2005. While there is a sizeable amount of  construction activity spurred by infrastructure projects in 2022, disruptions in the residential construction sector caused by the Covid-19 pandemic led to a shortage of labour as well as shortages of building materials. Building costs increased as large volumes of residential and non-residential work was approved, creating a demand  which couldn’t be met. The Covid-induced shortage of labour was a serious problem which is predicted to affect construction throughout 2022, which could be solved by attracting skilled migrant labour. Timber and metal are some of the building materials in short supply, but the availability and production of bricks has not been affected. Residential building costs are projected to remain high as long as supply can’t meet demand, and fewer housing developments are expected.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), the last statistics of the average gross floor area (GFA) of a new house in Australia and its provinces were recorded in 2018. The data also included the average cost of building a new house. From these two sets of data, the building cost per square metre for a certain type of dwelling can be worked out. ABS groups residential dwellings into three categories (houses, townhouses and apartments/flats). A house is defined as a detached single family home. A townhouse is defined as a semi-detached house sharing walls with other similar houses in the same row, but having its own private front and backyard. All the floors/storeys including the basement and yard in a townhouse are inhabited by a single owner. An apartment is a multi-family dwelling unit (MDU) or single block with multiple housing units/private rooms.

Cost of Building Detached Single Family Homes

Detached Single Family Homes - Australia & 8 Provinces - Building Costs Per Square Metre 2021

Detached Single Family Homes – Australia & 8 Provinces – Building Costs Per Square Metre 2021

Detached Single Family Homes - Australia & 8 Provinces - Building Costs Per Square Metre 2021_TABLE

Detached Single Family Homes – Australia & 8 Provinces – Building Costs Per Square Metre 2021_TABLE

In 2018, the building cost per square foot for detached private single-family homes in Australia was in the range $1,252.81 to $1,854.69 per m2, with the average being $1,489.84 per m2.

In 2021, the building cost per square foot for detached private single-family homes in Australia was in the range $1,390.14 to $2,061.29 per m2, with the average being $1,738.63 per m2.

The producer price index (PPI) for new house construction increased from 121.3 to 138 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 13.8% increase.

In the province of New South Wales (NSW), costs increased from $1,580.05 to $1,720.96 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 8.9% increase.

In the province of Victoria (VIC), costs increased from $1,284.50 to $1,390.14 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 8.2% increase.

In the province of Queensland  (QLD), costs increased from $1,252.81 to $1,512.05 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 20.69% increase.

In the province of South Australia (SA), costs increased from $1,360.44 to $1,589.29 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 16.8% increase.

In the province of Western Australia (WA), costs increased from $1,258.77 to $1,634.63 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 29.86% increase.

In the province of Tasmania (TAS), costs increased from $1,548.06 to $2,061.29 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 33.15% increase.

In the province of Northern Territory (NT), costs increased from $1,854.69 to $2,018.98 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 8.86% increase.

In the province of the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), costs increased from $1,779.38 to $1,981.73 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 11.4% increase.

Cost of Building Semi-Detached Townhouses

Semi Detached Townhouses - Australia & 8 Provinces - Building Costs Per Square Metre 2021

Semi Detached Townhouses – Australia & 8 Provinces – Building Costs Per Square Metre 2021

Semi Detached Townhouses - Australia & 8 Provinces - Building Costs Per Square Metre 2021_TABLE

Semi Detached Townhouses – Australia & 8 Provinces – Building Costs Per Square Metre 2021_TABLE

In 2018, the building cost per square foot for semi-detached private townhouses in Australia was in the range $1,366.95 to $2,253.90 per m2, with the average being $1,739.40 per m2.

In 2021, the building cost per square foot for semi-detached private townhouses in Australia was in the range $1,596.89 to $2,453.56 per m2, with the average being $2,022.93 per m2.

The producer price index (PPI) for new house construction increased from 121.3 to 138 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 13.8% increase.

In the province of New South Wales (NSW), costs increased from $1,844.44 to $2,008.93 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 8.9% increase.

In the province of Victoria (VIC), costs increased from $1,703.83 to $1,843.96 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 8.2% increase.

In the province of Queensland  (QLD), costs increased from $1,573.58 to $1,899.19 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 20.69% increase.

In the province of South Australia (SA), costs increased from $1,366.95 to $1,596.89 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 16.8% increase.

In the province of Western Australia (WA), costs increased from $1,535.93 to $1,994.54 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 29.86% increase.

In the province of Tasmania (TAS), costs increased from $1,543.90 to $2,055.75 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 33.15% increase.

In the province of Northern Territory (NT), costs increased from $2,253.90 to $2,453.56 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 8.86% increase.

In the province of the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), costs increased from $2,092.67 to $2,330.64 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 11.4% increase.

Cost of Building Apartments/Flats

Apartments Flats - Australia & 3 Provinces - Building Costs Per Square Metre 2021

Apartments Flats – Australia & 3 Provinces – Building Costs Per Square Metre 2021

Apartments Flats - Australia & 3 Provinces - Building Costs Per Square Metre 2021_TABLE

Apartments Flats – Australia & 3 Provinces – Building Costs Per Square Metre 2021_TABLE

In 2018, the building cost per square foot for apartments/flats in Australia was in the range $2,554.10 to $3,358.55 per m2, with the average being $2,949.40 per m2.

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In 2021, the building cost per square foot for apartments/flat in Australia was in the range $3,082.60 to $3,658.07 per m2, with the average being $3,305.89 per m2.

The producer price index (PPI) for new house construction increased from 121.3 to 138 in the period 2018 to 2021, which was a 13.8% increase.

In the province of New South Wales (NSW), costs increased from $3,358.55 to $3,658.07 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021.

In the province of Victoria (VIC), costs increased from $2,935.55 to $3,176.99 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021.

In the province of Queensland  (QLD), costs increased from $2,554.10 to $3,082.60 per m2 in the period 2018 to 2021.

Major Industrial Projects in Australia

According to the Australian government project tracker, there are 28 major construction projects in progress in the country. These are industrial and infrastructural developments.

The Althea Medicinal Cannabis Facility began on 12 December 2019. It is valued at $150 million and projected to employ 350 people of which 200 are permanent positions. The facility is comprised of a processing and production unit as well as a cannabis farm.

The Ammaroo Phosphate Project began on 26 October 2020. It is valued at $1.5 billion and expected to employ 1150 people of which are 250 are permanent positions. The open excavation mine will include a chemical plant and ancillary buildings.

The Asian Renewable Energy Hub began on 29 September 2020. It is valued at $53.6 billion and expected to employ 8000 people, of which 3000 are permanent positions. The wind and solar energy generation plant will produce 26 gigawatts of power.

The Asterion Medicinal Facility began on 1 April 2019. It is valued at $450 million and expected to employ 800 people, all of which are permanent positions. This cannabis facility includes a farm, research and production centre, as well as 40Ha glasshouse.

Australia Asia Power Link began on 14 July 2020. It is valued at $30 billion and expected to employ 1850 people, of which 350 are permanent positions. This project includes the construction of a 12Ha solar plant with a 10gigawatt output, battery storage and power line from the facility to Darwin Harbour.

Australian Vanadium Mine Project began on 13 August 2019. It is valued at $502 million and expected to employ 600 people, of which 200 are permanent positions. It includes a mine and processing plant.

EcoGraf Battery Graphite Plant began on 23 February 2021. It is valued at $100 million and expected to employ 315 people, of which 65 are permanent positions. This plant will process and supply 20,000 tonnes of pure battery graphite to manufacturers every year.

The Beyondie Sulphate of Potash plant began on 13 August 2019. It is valued at $266 million and expected to employ 130 people, of which 50 are permanent positions. The fertiliser plant will produce and supply commercial fertilizer in local and international markets.

The Finniss Lithium plant began on 23 February 2021. It is valued at $730 million and expected to employ 610 people, of which are 250 are permanent positions. The open excavation mine will include processing facilities.

The rest of the 28 projects are either mines, extraction and processing plants, energy generation, cannabis farms and similar industrial projects.

Major Residential Building Projects in Australia

A few residential building projects are underway compared to industrial and infrastructural projects. Most of these are commercial and mixed-use developments:

The Beulah Southbank Tower –  This multiplex in Melbourne began construction in 2020 and it is set to become the tallest building in Australia. Valued at AU$2 billion, it was expected to employ 4,700 construction workers. The two glass towers will take at least 7 years to complete, occupying 270,000m2 of space enough to accommodate residential units, with commercial space taking up 35,000m2 of the area which will include hotels, shops and offices. Health and entertainment facilities will take up 6,600m2 of space including a conference centre, kids playground, spas and gym. About 30,000m2 will be reserved for retail and within the mixed-use development, 7250m2 will be opened for a green environment/park accessible to the public.

Charter Hall Office Tower – The property developer has building plans for a 36-storey office tower in the capital city, which will be built next to the Chifley North tower accommodating 70,000m2 of space. The new twin tower dubbed Chifley South will have 65,000m2 of space. A leasehold was secured in 2019 with the financial assistance of GIC Singapore and in the preceding year, a freehold was obtained. The property developers have Gresham Building in their portfolio as well in addition to being the property managers of Chifly Square. However, construction will not start anytime soon as it will take years of preliminary planning and design to come up with a stakeholder approved project. The project is expected to create 3,500 jobs.

GPT/AMP Capital Tower – The redevelopment of this complex is in the planning stage for a proposed 75,000m2 tower with 43 storeys.

Oxford/Investa/MEA Tower – A joint venture development between three companies to build a 39-storey office and retail building with 47,800m2 of gross floor area.

Dexus Office Redevelopment –  This is a vertical expansion of the Dexus Office Tower, which will see the addition of 55 metres of floors to the Melbourne complex. Although officers were against the proposed project, it was approved by the Committee, and the new floors will be leased to clubs. The approval comes on the heels of the revised redevelopment plans submitted in 2020. There is a set of stringent codes behind the development of this entertainment block which was unexpected to secure a building permit. The club entertainment block has 20,000m2 of floor space and a link that connects with McGraths Lane will be built at a total cost of $300 million. Dexus is the same company behind the construction of the $1.5 billion 80 Collins St Tower in the CBD. Built by Multiplex, work on the 216m tall tower began in the middle of 2017, and the final account and handover ceremony was done in July 2020, opening the complex for business. The Collins St Tower has 38 storeys, a maximum gross floor area of 43,000m2 which is reserved for office rental as well as a hotel with 255 rooms. Extensive renovations were done to the existing offices on 47 Level A-grade centre. About 7000 tonnes of steel and 30,000m3 of concrete were used to build the tower.

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388 George Street Tower Redevelopment – In July 2020, Multiplex had another project in the final construction stage. The final account of the 388 George Street Tower was done at about the same time as the Collins Street Tower. Phase 1 of the 28-storey building was finished at a cost of $200 million. This development is a joint venture between the Australian property developers, Investa and Brookfield.

Pace Development Multi-Res Tower – The Gold Coast Highway is a prime location for tower developments. Among the proposed projects is the Frederick Street Tower, a 17 storey residential apartment with 827m2 of gross floor area. In May 2020, the company submitted proposals for a 10 storey mixed-use development valued at $120 million. Located on 223 Johnson Street, the tower will have 113 residential apartment units, shops and basement car parking. A few buildings will be demolished while others will be renovated before construction commences. Among the features of the building will be 1,2 and 3 bedroom units, cinema, rooftop terrace and pool, as well as space for a cafe and restaurant.

Burleigh Heads Gurner Group Tower –  This is another apartment planned for the Gold Coast and it will cost $120 million to build. Located on 1929 along the coastal highway, the Japanese-styled 22-storey tower will occupy 1012m2 of gross floor area with 80 dwelling units, as well as an oriental landscape  design borrowed from Singapore.

Macquarie Developments Broadbeach Group Tower – One of the highest towers on the Gold Coast, the development will have 52 storeys of residential apartments, valued at $120 million. While a lot of detached single-family home projects in Australia were shelved, cancelled and delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic and supply shortages, the Gold Coast has remained resilient, surging through the hard times, with business booming in the multi-family residential market. Demand has increased prices by 26% since 2021. About $1.2 billion worth of apartments were sold in 2021. The Broadbeach Tower on site 2917 has 35 apartment units, 28 three-bedroom units and 7 two-bedroom units. The ground floor hosts space for recreational facilities as well as a cafe. The 14-level architectural design will accommodate balcony-facing units on the lower and upper floors.

Gosford Residential  Towers – In September 2021, a mixed-use development plan comprising residential apartments, shopping centre, 183 room hotel and commercial space was lodged with the State Planning Department in Gosford. The whole project consists of 3 towers located on 26 Mann Street which will be built in three phases. The first tower will be 25 storeys high, valued at $56.7 million, and facing the Brisbane Waterfront. Stakeholder input and community consultation took place within the 28-day objection period after submission of the plans. The total valuation of the 3-phase project is $150 million and it will have room for 136 apartment units. DKO Architecture are the architects and Turf Design Studio are the landscape designers.

Whitlam Green Village Project – An experiment in sustainable and environmental-friendly design, this huge project will see 2100 homes being built in the suburb of Whitlam in the Molonglo Valley, Canberra. The planning and design stage will involve feasibility studies, with a fully functional prototype of 13 eco-friendly homes being built as a demonstration and showcase for clients, community stakeholders and regulators. The dwellings will run on electricity generated by solar panels, as this is a clean form of energy with zero carbon emissions. The landscaped village will support electric cars with charging stations built on private plots. Each multi-family block has two semi-detached dwellings facing a detached dwelling separated by a paved footpath. All dwellings have a front car parking space linked to the road network within the village as well as a private backyard with lawn. The detached dwelling unit is much larger with 2 bedrooms, kitchen, lounge, open patio/courtyard, storage and other rooms. The semi-detached block has a smaller unit with an open plan lounge/kitchen and a bigger unit with one bedroom, lounge, dining and internal courtyard patio. A shopping centre and school will be included in the village. The village homes’ structural frames will be built from recycled Cupolex plastic. The overall objective is to meet the minimum smart/green housing requirements set by the LHA and HIA.

Ginninderry Suburb – This is the second phase of the 6-star green housing project in the community located in West Belconnen, McClymont Wy, ACT region. The project is a mixture of single-family homes and multi-family blocks. At least 800 homes including 600 single-family units will be built. Ginninderry is part of a 3-phase development involving two other suburbs – MacNamara and Strathnairn. The Estate Development Plan submitted with the authorities will see 39 multi-family blocks and 664 single-family units being built, which adds up to 803 properties. The project includes landscaping, road networks, public spaces and necessary infrastructure. For high-income homebuyers who value their privacy and need a detached home on a private plot, this is a big opportunity, since many property developers are focussing on towers, apartments and MDUs. The second phase of the project will see the development of MacNamara suburb, which will be zoned into various groups such as single-family, multi-family, flexi units and terraced/row houses. Touted as a high-class development, Ginninderry is expected to accommodate 30,000 residents in the next few decades, and ultimately 11,500 homes will be built.

Bowden Multi-Res Infill Project – This former industrial zone and high density area located in the inner city was acquired by the government in an effort to rebuild and convert it into a 5-star green mixed-use development with 2 and 3-storey townhouses as well as architecturally-styled box apartments with street facing balconies. The objective was to build a village style environment with green landscaping and open spaced recreational zones such as parks and town squares. Dwellings are arranged in block and parcel plan. The development area is made up of 5 precincts, Bowden East which is a residential area, Bowden West which is undeveloped at the moment, the Port Road commercial/mixed use area, Gasworks heritage site and the Core Zone for retail and mixed use facilities, which is situated between Bowden East and Port Road. The Core Precinct will have over 10,000m2 of retail and commercial space consisting of a supermarket, cafes, offices, public service buildings, shops and apartments. Movement within the urban village will be traffic-free, restricted to pedestrians and cyclists. Commercial and retail activity will be limited to mixed-use zones, but there is space allocated for frontline vending on the Bowden East residential park. The revamped inner city village is on the outskirts of the CBD, only 2500 metres away, nestled on 16Ha of land with green parks. The whole project is estimated to cost $264 million. Initiated in 2008, it will be complete by 2027. Currently, over 715 homes have been sold and there are more than 1200 residents settled in the village. More than 583 homes have been built and completed. More than 137 residences are under construction and 21 plots have been allotted for development. Bowden is a break from the modern tower apartments dotting the skylines of Australian cities. The minimum price of a townhouse in this Adelaide community is $422,000.Bigger residential units are as high as $700,000 and above. Government sponsored urban renewal projects of this kind can be found on SA Housing Authority website.

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Defense Housing in Katherine East – On 20 March 2020, the Tender Board advertised a tender for the construction of  10 houses on behalf of Defense Housing Australia in Katherine East, Northern Territory. The work includes design and conception. The town is beset by severe housing shortages, which have led to a spike in homelessness, one the highest in the country at 31 times the national rate.

Mirvac Waterfront Newstead Brisbane – Mirvac is undertaking another major project as it adds another tower (Quay) in its residential development portfolio which includes six towers facing the Brisbane River in the Waterfront Newstead. The Quay Tower occupies a gross floor area of 17,434m2 over 25 storeys, including 825m2 of retail space on the ground floor. The tower featuring green architecture will have 135 apartments over a height of 95 metres, lifts, rooftop terrace with recreational amenities such as bar, gardens, swimming pool, gym, fitness/yoga centre as well as office space. The design has 253 car parking bays, 124 bike parking spots and emergency solar power panel installation on the rooftop. Green landscaping surrounds the vicinity and the project is expected to be complete by June 2022. So far the Quay Tower has been sold out in advance bookings, with apartment units starting at $382,000 generating $155 million is sales and getting closer to the $180 million project valuation. The 3 and 4-bedroom sky pavilions and penthouses were going at a minimum price tag of $2,925,000. The Mirvac Waterfront began development in 2001. Three towers have been completed and two are under construction. The construction of LIV Anura and Quay is in progress, with the later having secured a building permit in July 2020. A combined 333 apartment units will be available in these two towers, and the project should be complete by 2024. Pier, Park and Unison are the first towers to be completed by Mirvac in the Waterfront Newstead. The overall cost of the project is $1 billion upon completion of all phases.

 

White & Partners Toowong Town Centre – This mixed-use development in Brisbane was approved in October 2020 after a Development Application (DA) was submitted in April of the same year. Initially the project had been approved in 2016 as a 3-tower residential facility, but the developers abandoned the idea in favour of an open space plan with only two towers. About half of the land in the precinct will be dedicated to landscaping and public spaces in an effort to incorporate the sub-tropical environment, creating an attractive leisure and recreational centre with apartment dwellings as well as access to shops, retail and offices. An open-air plaza will be central to the theme, providing entertainment and event venues for street festivals, markets, mini concerts, outdoor dining, exhibitions and other social gatherings. The companies behind this development are White& Partners in collaboration with State Development Corp. The whole project is valued at $450 million, occupying a land area of 9,000m2. The towers will have 150 apartment units, built next to a shopping centre with 30 retailers. Business tenants are expected to buy space in the office tower and retail centres upon approval of the project, but construction began in 2021 and the complex should be open for business in 2023. A mixed-use complex is even more important in this era as evidenced during the Covid-19 pandemic where commuting to work was banned in favour of remote job locations based at home. Toowong Town Centre is located on the old site of Woolworths supermarkets.

Lot 101 Hay Street Towers, East Perth –  This development began towards the end of the year in October 2020. The scope of the project includes twin residential towers and a microbrewery.  The first tower has space for 130 apartment units and commercial/office rental space measuring 820m2 in total gross floor area. The second tower has space for 210 apartment units and commercial/office rental space measuring 535m2 in GFA. Construction of the first phase is scheduled towards the end of 2022. The project will employ 500 construction workers and over 1000 indirect jobs. Located in Riverside Precinct, the towers are surrounded by gardens and parks closer to the Swan River. The land was developed and acquired by Finbar & Ventrade for a sum of $16 million. The whole site measures 5,335m2 in size and the project is valued at $200 million.

Elizabeth Quay Lot V and Lot VI Mixed-Use Complex – Conceived in 2018 by the regional government, this mixed-use development in Perth was submitted for approval in October 2021. Two towers will be constructed, a tall and shorter one. The tall tower is 54 storeys high, it will mainly be used for luxury residential purposes, accommodating 220 first-class apartments and a 5-star hotel with 220 rooms, but it will also have space for retail (1300m2), office rental (15,000m2), conference centre, restaurants and bars. The shorter tower is 19 storeys high, it will solely be used for commercial letting, with office suites and retail space measuring 35,000m2 and 2,000m2 respectively. External works include car parking. The site area is is 7,000m2, whereas the total GFA of office buildings is 69,352m2. Amenities include a childcare centre, rooftop terrace with pool, cafes and fitness centre. There are 649 parking bays for bicycles, 9 bays for motorcycles and 90 parking bays for vehicles. The total valuation of the project is $851 million and $540 million will go towards office development. Brookefield won the tender to build the mixed-use complex, beating Mirvac Group. The contractor released detailed working drawings for the project in November 2017, and the completion date is set for 2023.


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