designed to give back to the community

$145 million development for Pavilion Hotel site on Northbourne Avenue

Kappelle Projects has applied to demolish the Pavilion Hotel on Northbourne Avenue, replacing it with 394 apartments across four buildings. The $145 million development would include a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, over the road from the light rail stop being built at Macarthur Avenue, according to a development application under the name of Robert Batkovic of Kappelle Projects and the unit plan on the site.

Robert Batkovich is a director of Kappelle, with Rachel Batkovic, and Veronica, Ivan and Jason Krizaic. The company is owned by Veronica and Ivan Krizaic. Four buildings up to nine storeys are planned to replace the hotel in two stages, which would see the round building at the south of the site replaced first before the main hotel building is demolished. The development requires a lease variation to allow residential use on the site and remove limits on floor area and basements. The main hotel building would continue to operate on a subdivided block while the first stage of the development was completed.

Architect Vishal Saxena said concrete pillars would pay homage to the two inverted canopies that mark the entrance to the current hotel and welcome people into the redeveloped site. A three-storey building planned to front Dooring Street at the rear of the site would feature terrace units, marketed as small home and office dwellings. The three large buildings, two of which face on to Northbourne Avenue, are proposed to be 25 metres high. The smaller terrace building that faces Dooring Street is proposed to be 12 metres tall.

The entire development would include four studio apartments, 118 one-bedroom apartments, 206 two-bedroom apartments, 51 three-bedroom apartments and 11 three-bedroom penthouses. The proposed penthouse units cover two levels and have access to open courtyards. The development would exceed all minimum floor space requirements set out for apartments, development application documents say.

Five retail and commercial units are also slated for the site, with 880 basement parking spaces and rooftop terraces. Mr Saxena said the buildings would not be a gated community and the precinct would allow and encourage people to move through the area, which would connect Northbourne Avenue and Dooring Street. “We are creating a community that’s going to be well integrated into the Dickson area,” he said. “It’s a development which fully meshes with how mixed use areas should be in Canberra.” Public spaces incorporated into the site showed the developer was giving back to the community.

The number of car parks in the plans were more than required and traffic would be able to queue within the site rather than on Northbourne Avenue, Mr Saxena said.

Mr Saxena said his firm, Peckvonhartel Group, which designed the proposed precinct, sought to “seamlessly” integrate interior and exterior design. Canberra’s solar rules mandate three hours of sunlight between 9am and 3pm on June 21, the winter solstice, on the floor or internal wall of a daytime living area of at least 70 per cent of apartments on a site. The development application says 70 per cent of the new apartments on the Pavilion site would receive at least three hours of sunlight on the solstice, but doesn’t specify times.

Kappelle Projects manages the units plan lease on the site. The Pavilion Hotel, originally called the Canberra International Hotel, opened in 1981 and is owned by the Capital Hotel Group, which also owns the Avenue Hotel and the Deco Hotel, currently being built by Kappelle Projects.