The refit of a historic Bendigo building into warehouse apartments will make it worth more than $7 million and be finished by the end of next year, according to its real estate agent.
The four-storey red brick William Webb and Co building was built in 1878 as a flour mill. In a later incarnation it was a sewing machine factory and during the 1980s a nightclub.
Now Barry Plant Real Estate director Bill Williams said ‘The Webb’ was set for conversion into warehouse apartments.
A proposal to subdivide the building into 15 apartments and 4 commercial lots is currently before the City of Greater Bendigo planning department which has already approved internal works.
Mr Williams said this would be the final stage of an approval process which had taken several years.
“This is one of the iconic building in the Bendigo CBD,” the real estate agent said.
“So this process has taken a long time in planning but what’s important is that the heritage facade and the nature of the building will remain.
“Window frames, brick work – everything you see on the outside will be retained.”
The developers will not cater for parking but Mr Williams said future residents could apply for long-term parking at the nearby council car park.
“But these apartments are designed for professionals who work at the bank, or perhaps at the hospital – people who haven’t got need for a car or have a company car,” he said.
“With the supermarket across the road it’s got all facilities needed within striking distance.”
The real estate agent said he had also received interest from investors looking to use the apartments for short-term accommodation services such as Airbnb.
The apartments will range in price from $475,000 up to $575,000.
There will be an internal lift servicing five apartments and a foyer on each of the three upper floors.
Five of the apartments will be one-bedroom and 10 will be two-bedroom, with the largest about 90 square metres.
The apartments are already on the market and Mr Williams said he had sold three and hoped to sell at least half before the date the refit is set to be complete – September 2017.
The existing sex shop and bakery will remain on the ground floor while an architect’s office is set to move into the new retail space.