With a cinema planned to grace the community of Gungahlin, there will be more reason for home buyers to consider the northside region.
The ACT Environment, Planning and Sustainable Development Directorate released a second development application for the construction of a two-storey cinema complex on Hinder Street worth nearly $15 million.
The idea to develop a cinema in Gungahlin was first mooted in 2012 when the ACT government called for expressions of interest for the site. A year later, developer Krnc Group was awarded the tender.
The first DA, which was released in November 2016, comprised of a cinema with Hoyts as the preferred operator of the seven-screen theatre. It also included a number of retail and commercial spaces.
However, a legal battle brought on by United Cinemas delayed construction. United Cinemas claimed it had an existing lease agreement which allowed it to operate on the development. The matter was resolved in court with United Cinemas as the operator.
The latest DA features three ground-level retail or commercial spaces, 117 ground-level car parking spaces, and a ground-level United Cinemas foyer.
The cinema will be located on the second floor with eight screens and 1662 seats. All eight cinemas will have a dress circle theatre layout with two levels of seating. The bottom level will have recliner seats while the second will have stadium seats.
According to Andrew Potts of Independent Gungahlin, the long-awaited cinema will be an appealing drawcard for buyers, particularly families.
“It’s a well-balanced town centre for families that have all those things that any other town centre would offer,” he said.
The Domain House Price Report for the December quarter 2019 found Gungahlin’s median house price remained stagnant over the previous quarter with a 0.1 per cent growth to $675,000. But on a year-to-year outlook, Gungahlin’s house prices declined slightly by 0.2 per cent.
Potter noted that the low stock in the region had reflected Gungahlin’s median house price, but was optimistic about its growth.
“It’s still a solid market that is appealing for families and with local stores, an upcoming cinema and choice in terms of the types of property people can buy, it will probably make it more appealing for buyers,” he said.
“The market will continue to be quite solid in the coming year.”
At a previous Gungahlin Community Council meeting, United Cinemas chairman Roy Mustaca stated their cinemas were the “best cinemas in the world”.
“I’m here because I want to build the best cinema that I can,” he said.
Mustaca has a chain of cinemas around Australia and in recent years bought the chocolate cafe franchise Max Brenner.
“We want to offer red-carpet, first-class service, good quality in-theatre dining because that’s what’s going to bring you to the cinema and enjoy the experience,” said United Cinemas architect Vanessa Benitiz.
According to the DA, the complex is the first stage in developing a larger precinct which is set to include commercial development by the second stage and a commercial or serviced apartment development by the third stage.
Once the DA is approved, it is expected to take 18 months to complete construction.