Adelaide’s controversial $95m ORTA development gets green light to proceed

Adelaide’s controversial $95m ORTA development gets green light to proceed

A consortium of local developers has been given the green light to proceed with a controversial $95 million high-rise project in the Adelaide suburb of Norwood after introducing changes to the design due to community opposition.

South Australia’s State Commission Assessment Panel has approved the ORTA On The Parade mixed-used development proposed by the Pep Rocca-led Australasian Property Developments and Rocca Property Group and the Charlie Zollo-founded Zollo Property Group.

Located at 128 The Parade, in Norwood’s commercial heart, ORTA will rise eight storeys to deliver 65 apartments, including a penthouse, as well as two levels of commercial and retail space on the lower levels.

The proposed development, located opposite the historic Norwood Hotel, will retain the heritage facades of the existing properties as well as sections of bluestone wall that date back to the earliest history of the site. Two historic church halls, part of the original Norwood Baptist Church that was established on the site in 1869, will be retained and converted into retail space.

Community opposition to the original proposal centred on the height and density of the proposed development which is located in a low-rise neighbourhood. The area currently has a six-storey height limit.

Among the changes introduced by the developers to get the project over the line are a reconfiguration of the design to incorporate two distinctly separate buildings rather than a single block, emphasising the streetfront laneway, while setbacks have been introduced to the upper floors and the western end of the site.

The development will also have four fewer apartments at 65, down from the 69 originally proposed.

“This development approval is a significant milestone and we’re looking forward to kicking off construction,” says Pep Rocca, the managing director of Australasian Property Developments and Rocca Property.

The ORTA development, named after Lake Orta in northern Italy, comes on the heels of an earlier mixed-used project for Norwood launched by Australasian Property Developments; the $110 million COMO which is under construction nearby on The Parade and due for completion next year.

“ORTA On The Parade is our next exciting chapter following the overwhelming success of COMO in the heart of Norwood,” says Rocca.

Construction of ORTA is due to begin later this year, creating about 600 jobs, with the developer estimating it will deliver 200 jobs when the retail and commercial space in the development is completed.

Australasian Property Developments, established in 2004 by Rocca, has an extensive development portfolio comprising residential, commercial and industrial properties. The company is currently undertaking the $350 million Bio Hub Adelaide mixed-use medical precinct on the former Coca-Cola site at Thebarton in Adelaide’s west.

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