Downer site slated for transformative redevelopment

The high-profile site of the former Downer Primary School is slated to be transformed by CHC following the submission of a development application for an integrated mix of apartments, townhouses and independent seniors living.

The inner north block, which has had several failed attempts at redevelopment over the past 20 years, will be developed to include 37 townhouses, 123 apartments and 120 dwellings for seniors.

The 32,000sqm site will also include a shared open space designed to promote active and healthy living.

The urban renewal project aims to address the diverse needs of people living in Canberra’s Inner North and to assist in the rejuvenation of both the Downer shops, which have undergone recent upgrades, and the suburb at large.

Kim Sinclair, CEO of CHC, says the company is excited to be progressing the project.

Sinclair says CHC’s focus is on “providing affordable and attainable residences for rent. We do this by undertaking a range of projects, some of which are sold to enable CHC to independently and sustainably increase our rental portfolio”.

“This development achieves exactly that, providing apartments close to the city for young professionals, townhouses for downsizers and young families, and purpose-built dwellings to promote independent seniors living,” she says.

“We’ve worked hard to ensure that the new precinct is well integrated with the existing suburb. We have included a number of entry points and laneways and the masterplan has been designed with the intention of complementing the surrounding area.”

CHC undertook a thorough and successful community consultation process, which was conducted to ensure the development strikes a balance between meeting the requirements of home buyers, enhancing the current lifestyle and streetscape enjoyed by the Downer community, and ensuring the development is financially viable for the non-for-profit housing company.

Downer Community Association’s (DCA) Miles Boak says the consultation process has been “exemplary”, explaining that DCA has been “engaged with the design for the past two years, and the company have really listened, compromised, and made many amendments”.

Boak says DCA pushed for a greater balance of townhouses to apartments, accessible community spaces, assisted seniors living accommodation, and a strong integration between the development and the Downer shops.

As to next steps, Sinclair says “once we’ve gone through the standard application process, once builders and contractors are negotiated they will confirm price lists, then go to a Downer pre-release for existing residents”.

For more information, visit au/project/downer

*This article was published in the Canberra Weekly (edition 06/04/17) and was written by Denholm Samaras.


CHC forms go online!

CHC forms go online!

We aim to make it easier for our tenants to get things done. That’s why we have taken our tenancy forms online.

Our online forms are not just environmentally friendly, they are a quicker way to share your maintenance requests. Rather than having to call or email us, you can now simply download the forms from our website – just one easy step!

Through our online forms, you can now:

Request general maintenance:

If you have a dripping tap, a running toilet, a broken fly screen, etc., you can now request to have the repairs required via our general Maintenance Request Form. Just tell us the repair needed, what caused the problem and attach a photo (if you have one), and we will contact you to organise repairs.

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Put in modification requests:

If your property needs changes made, such as additions or alterations due to a disability or injury, then you can fill out a moderation request online and someone from our team will be in touch. This form works in the same way as our previous system, so medical information may be required on completion of your form.

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Put in improvement requests:

If you would like larger improvements made to your home, for example, Foxtel installed, a shade sail, block out blinds, etc., then you can use our online form to make this request. Please note, improvement requests are different to maintenance requests and may incur some costs to you depending on the request.

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Request to have a pet:

At CHC, we believe that owning a pet can be very rewarding, so where possible, we want to give our tenants this opportunity. If you are looking at bringing a pet into your home, let us know the type, breed, age and weight of the pet via our online form.

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Our maintenance forms were created to help make your life easier, so if you have any further questions about the forms, how to use them, or if you have any feedback, please feel free to give us a call on 6248 7716, or email us at

However, if you would prefer to continue to call, email or fill out the hard copies of the forms, then please feel free to do so! We want to make this process as convenient for you as possible.

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