First sale of the decade: JT Allen director sells historic former Ford showroom for more than $100m

As announced in the Australian Financial Review today, Josh Allen, the director of JT Allen Real Estate has negotiated the off market sale of an historic building to Centennial Property Group for over $100m.

The 75 Crown Street property was the historic home of Ford in Australia, from 1938 until 2012.

It was originally built for an estimated £125,000, and was considered a revolutionary design for the times.

Josh Allen said his qualified database was key to securing the buyer; the same approach used in his December sale of a 13-unit residential block at 10 William Street, Double Bay for what is believed to be a residential suburb record for 2019.

The historically significant city-fringe building retains its landmark facade and harbour views. It was originally constructed in 1938 for Harold Hastings Deering and is recorded in the national archives namely for its use as a custom-built six storey vehicle showroom for the Ford Motor Company from 1938 until 2012. It was designed to include a revolutionary system of banked spiral car ramps allowing cars to enter the building and move efficiently between floors. Its historical significance relates to the increased ownership of motor vehicles in the post depression economy and the dominance of Ford at that time 

Today, the 9,253.6 sqm mixed-use building building is home to Woolworths, Wilsons and the East Sydney Private Hospital and includes 22 tenanted high-end residential apartments which can be on sold or subdivided, as well as commercial and retail tenants.

Centennial Property Group’s executive director Jonathan Wolf says the site offers the fund manager diverse opportunities. 

“CPG`s ability to execute quickly was key to securing this architecturally significant building and the mixed use offers a range of opportunities for us to add value over the longer term,” Mr Wolf said.

The company’s head of real estate, Grant Traub, said the location was key.  

“We were drawn to the opportunity by its unique nature – there are very few mixed use island sites in such a prime location on the edge of the Sydney CBD,” Mr Taub said.  

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