"HIGH-rise king Harry Triguboff, confident that the Brisbane and Gold Coast apartment markets are heading for a price surge, is to step up his quest for new development sites and hasten the launch of two major projects.
The veteran developer is putting sites in the Brisbane CBD and central Gold Coast 'under the microscope'.
He says he will bring forward the launch of a 77-level Brisbane tower, Infinity, by several months to the middle of 2010.
"Prices in Queensland will, I am sure, follow suit and that will happen sooner rather than later. They may not reach Sydney levels but the gap will close.
"That's because apartment supply levels in Brisbane and the Gold Coast are falling and, with the credit squeeze forcing many projects to be shelved or deferred, supply will get even tighter. That means rents will go up, with rent pressures being further increased by strong migration to south-east Queensland."
He ventured into the Brisbane market in 2007 when he acquired a site on the corner of Adelaide and Boundary streets in a move he described as 'the opening of a third development front'. Construction of Soleil, a 74-level tower which will be Brisbane's tallest apartment building, is under way on the site and due for completion by late 2011.
Meriton has sold 82 one, two and three-bedroom apartments in Soleil, where prices start at $310,000 and peak at $900,000.
New project, Infinity, is a 77-level tower on a $25 million Herschel Street site and will include 209 apartments, 422 serviced apartments, and office and retail space.
Mr Triguboff says he is looking closely at a third Brisbane development site -- one on which another major developer has shelved plans for a sizeable project."Source