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52-60 Townhall Avenue, Preston

Big Housing Build

The Big Housing Build is the largest social and affordable housing building program in Victoria’s history.

More than 9,300 new social housing properties will be built or replaced, and more than 2,900 affordable housing properties will be built over the next 4 years.

The Big Housing Build will be managed by Homes Victoria, which has been created for 4 reasons:

  1. To support Victorians who are finding it difficult to secure stable, affordable housing and help them live their best possible life.
  2. To manage the more than $26 billion in housing assets that currently house more than 116,000 Victorians.
  3. To renew and substantially expand those assets by ensuring the Big Housing Build is delivered on budget and on time.
  4. To make sure we have a sustainable housing system that can deliver for generations to come.

Homes Victoria will work closely with industry, the not-for-profit sector and the community to maximise social and economic benefits. The priority is to fast-track new social and affordable housing right now – and plan for sustainable, long term growth in housing.

On 9 September 2021 the Victorian Government announced 89 projects that will deliver 2,352 homes for Victorians under the Big Housing Build.

One of these projects is 52-60 Townhall Avenue, Preston, where Homes Victoria has granted funding to Housing Choices Australia to develop new community housing.

Community housing

Social housing is an umbrella term that includes both public housing and community housing. It generally indicates housing that involves some degree of subsidy.

Public housing is housing owned and managed by Homes Victoria.

Community housing is housing owned or managed by community housing providers. Community housing providers are highly regulated, not-for profit organisations that have the industry expertise, decades of experience and commitment to deliver safe, secure and affordable homes to renters.

Who lives in community housing?

More than 20,000 Victorian households live in community housing.

People living in community housing are everyday Victorians, including older women, young families, and people with disabilities. These people and households all have one thing in common: they are all living on low incomes.

Proposed Development

52-60 Townhall Avenue, Preston, is a community housing development being delivered by Housing Choices Australia and funded by Homes Victoria as part of the Big Housing Build. The site is currently a public car park and is immediately adjacent to the Preston Police Station, and across the road from the Preston Library. The site is well located for public transport, services and amenities, being one block to the east of the High St retail precinct.

The project design proposes 39 apartments in a six storey building elevated over the car park. A small pocket park is proposed for the south west corner of the site, so that existing mature trees will be retained. The building consists of 1 and 2 bedroom apartments. Twenty eight car parks will be available for public use including three that will be dedicated to car share schemes. One additional car park will be assigned to the apartment complex above. The development provides well orientated private and communal open space and has high Environmentally Sustainable Design (ESD) commitments.

Planning documents

<links to be added>

Planning report

Architectural plans

Landscape plans


Survey plan

Arboriculture Assessment

Transport Engineering Assessment

Waste Management Plan

Green Travel Plan

ESD Plan and Stormwater Assessment

Acoustic Report

Pre-application meetings with Darebin City Council and feedback received

Planning feedback from DELWP

OVGA planning documents and OVGA feedback

Summary of previous community and council consultation

Summary of Victoria Police consultation

Community Consultation

Streamlined planning processes have been introduced for the Big Housing Build. These processes require community housing providers to consult with the community before applying for planning approval.

Please refer to the Planning Victoria website for more information:

Information Session

In light of COVID-19 safety measures and restrictions, a virtual information session will be held on <insert particulars>. This will provide an opportunity to view the plans, meet the team working on the project and ask questions. To RSVP, please enter your details in the form below by <date and time> and you will receive the link to this session via email.

This session will be recorded and made available on this website for members of the community who are not able to attend the session.


Your feedback on the proposed development is welcomed. Please submit your feedback to by <due date>.

Note that feedback must be received by the due date. Members of the public will not have any further opportunities to provide feedback before planning approval is sought.

When providing feedback, please refer to the plans and other associated documents and be as specific as possible. The questions listed below may help to guide your feedback.

  • Do you feel this project positively contributes to the neighbourhood?
  • Are there specific elements of the design that you support or have concerns about?
  • Do you feel you have been provided with enough information about the project?
  • Do you have any other comments about the project?


If you wish to speak to someone about this proposed development, please contact Urbis on (03) 8663 4888.