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Property & Development

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Our experience

A common feature of many of Australia’s most successful businesses leaders and entrepreneurs is that they built their fortunes through property. Another is that they were advised by Arnold Bloch Leibler’s renowned Property & Development practice. 

Our team is unique in the marketplace in terms of the collective experience and depth of partners, who have represented clients across numerous landmark property and development projects around Australia for over 50 years.

Like our clients, we approach property and development projects from the ground up. We work with them to develop and implement strategies for buying, selling, financing, developing and re-packaging property in a manner that minimises exposure and maximises returns.

Our Property & Development practice is a ‘one-stop-shop’, covering all aspects of property acquisition, financing, planning and environmental issues, development, construction, sales and leasing. Our clients turn to us for this consolidated approach, which is critical for managing time frames and containing costs.

"The defining characteristic of ABL is the consistency of the service provided, the depth of experience, the high quality of the staff at all levels and the ability to act expeditiously."

Client quote, Legal 500 Asia Pacific

Property & Development services

Property acquisitions and sales

We advise on all legal aspects of the acquisition and sale processes, including due diligence, taxation and stamp duty planning and Foreign Investment Review Board requirements. With considerable knowledge of the property investment market, our lawyers can advise on the establishment of sophisticated property holding structures, such as syndicates, joint ventures and listed funds.

Construction and development

We advise on the negotiation, drafting, management and enforcement of building and development agreements. Our objective is to provide clients with the legal foundation necessary to assist clients minimise risks and maximise returns from a construction and development project. Our experience in construction litigation also assists clients to manage and resolve potential disputes as economically and favourably as possible.  Our construction experience spans residential (including landmark city towers and broad acre developments), mixed use, commercial, industrial and retail developments.


We are recognised as a market leader in lease innovation. We advise private groups, partnerships, institutions, developers and financiers on all aspects of residential, commercial (including office), industrial and infrastructure projects. Our team advises on the negotiation, preparation and enforcement of all types of commercial, industrial and retail tenancy documents.

Property finance

We represent both lenders and borrowers in a wide range of property related finance transactions. Because we work on both sides of the finance equation, we understand the requirements of both parties. As a result, we are able to negotiate advantageous financial arrangements for our clients.

Planning and environment

We advise on each stage of the planning and development process from due diligence through to completion.  Planning and environmental issues are identified and dealt with upfront, rather than being treated as an afterthought, ensuring the smooth delivery and success of development projects. This proactive approach delivers real value to developers, as issues can be dealt with up front – avoiding back end delays and unnecessary litigation, which can run up significant holding costs. This is critical for complex and significant projects.

Our work

Property acquisitions and sales

Acted for a number of Australia’s commercial property developers and institutional investors on a broad spectrum of property matters, including:

  • Charter Hall Long WALE REIT and Hostplus: on its $1.68 billion cash and scrip buyout proposal of one of Australia’s biggest freehold pub property owners, ALE Property Group
  • Charter Hall Group and Abacus Property Group: on their respective acquisitions of a one-third interest in the Myer Melbourne building for a combined $270 million
  • Medical Properties Trust: in relation to the acquisition of $1.25 billion of hospitals from Australian private hospital operator Healthscope
  • IP Generation:
    • on a $300 million portfolio of Sydney and regional NSW neighbourhood shopping centres
    • on their half stake acquisition of Westfield Helensvale for $185 million
  • Charter Hall Group:
    • on the purchase of a $353 million portfolio of six Bunnings stores around Australia
    • on a leasehold interest in 35 hectares of master planned approved industrial land known as Light Horse Business Hub in Eastern Creek, NSW
    • on the acquisition, development and leasing of industrial properties in Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, Western Australia and Tasmania by the Core Logistics Partnership Trust
    • on the $830 million acquisition of Telstra’s office headquarters in Melbourne and the $1.43 billion acquisition of a 49% interest in Telstra exchange properties 
    • on an $840 million agreement with BP for a stake in 225 convenience and fuel outlets 
    • on its acquisition - via a Charter Hall managed fund, with Charter Hall and GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund as investors - of a 49 per cent stake in the Ampol Property Trust
  • MAB Corporation: on the acquisition of 32-hectares of land near Cranbourne, Victoria for $37.5 million
  • AsheMorgan: on its acquisition of a 50 percent stake in two office buildings from real estate investment trust, Dexus
  • Trawalla Group: on the sale of its Parliament Square development in Hobart to Tasmanian-based super fund Spirit Super for $330 million
  • City Harbour: on the sale of two office buildings and an associated 163 car park podium located at Melbourne’s Dockands
  • Gurner and Qualitas: on a redevelopment of a Southbank hostel into a $250 million apartment tower
  • MECCA Brands: in the negotiation of its lease for its new flagship store in Melbourne’s Bourke Street mall
  • TMG Developments: on the $50 million sale of one of Melbourne’s most recognised buildings, ‘the Hotel Lindrum,’ to property developer Time and Place
  • DeGroup: on the acquisition of the Caroline Springs shopping centre from Lendlease for approximately $140 million
  • Essendon Airport: on the development and leasing of Bombardier’s Australian corporate jet MRO base at Essendon Airport, Victoria
  • LK Property Group: on the acquisition and development of various residential buildings including Capitol Grand in South Yarra, Victoria
  • CGA Spencer: on the $200 million sale of Flinders Bank build to rent and residential development site to Mirvac
  • Haben Property Fund on the purchase of two shopping centre assets – The Pines shopping centre and Caloundra shopping centre for a combined $250 million+
  • Metro Property: on the acquisition of the prominent ‘Bingara Gorge’ site from Lendlease, one of Australia’s largest residential subdivisions
  • Walker Corporation: on the $56 million acquisition of Abacus-controlled entity, Goods Shed North, Docklands
  • OSK Group: on the $70 million sale of Melbourne Square retail precinct, and
  • A private family group: on the sale of a new Australia Post HQ site to Charter Hall Group.

Construction and development

Acted for major Australian and international property developers and institutional investors on a range of landmark property development and construction matters, including:

  • Major Transport Infrastructure Authority: in relation to the West Gate Tunnel Project on behalf of the Victorian Government
  • Charter Hall Group: in relation to several development and construction contracts for commercial and industrial properties in New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia
  • Twaaj Investments: on the development of a new industrial estate, known as the ‘Melbourne Business Park’ through a partnership with Stockland
  • Newmark Capital, Gurner and Qualitas: on the construction agreements for the redevelopment of the Jam Factory into a $1.4 billion mixed-use precinct
  • Beck Property Group: in relation to the build-to-rent development at Caulfield Village, forming part of the Caulfield Village Racecourse redevelopment project
  • Gurner: ™ in relation to the construction agreements for several projects across Victoria and Queensland
  • Capital Alliance: on a development agreement with Development Victoria for a $1.5 billion redevelopment of Central Dandenong
  • Hamton and Hostplus: on the construction and broader structure agreements for the $2 billion redevelopment of the Moonee Valley Racecourse
  • Steadfast Capital: on the $170 million redevelopment of ‘The Walk Arcade’ in Melbourne’s CBD
  • World Class Land: on the $900 million development of ‘Australia 108’ at 70 Southbank Boulevard, Southbank
  • SP Setia: in relation to two major projects including UNO Melbourne and Sapphire by the GardensBeulah International: on a range of construction agreements across their portfolio, including ‘Southbank by Beulah’, ‘Paragon’, ‘Provenance’ and ‘Grounds of Kew’
  • Time & Place: on a range of industrial estates including ‘Cooper T&P, ‘Leakes T&P’, ‘The Junction’ and ‘Williams Point Business Park’
  • Salta Properties: on the construction contracts for multiple industrial estates in Melbourne, and
  • Golden Age Group: on the construction agreements for a number of projects including
    • a $190 million 27-storey commercial tower in Little Collins St, Melbourne
    • a $325 million luxury residential mixed-use project, ‘The Harrington Collection’, and
    • the $450 million second tower for Sky Village.


  • Honda Australia: on the negotiation of Agreement for Lease and Lease over new centralised Australian head-office premises
  • Salta: on the acquisition, development and leasing of commercial properties
  • Charter Hall: on the development and long-term lease of two new Coles Customer Fulfilment Centres to be built in Melbourne and Sydney with a combined lettable area of 60,000 square metres
  • Telstra: on office leasing matters and the leasing of Telstra flagship retail premises in the Melbourne CBD
  • Zagame Corporation: on office, retail and hotel/gaming leases within their Victorian and Queensland portfolio
  • Cremorne Properties: on ongoing retail and office leasing, including to tenants such as REA Group, SEEK Limited and Tesla
  • Hume Property Group: on the documentation and negotiation of an Agreement for Lease and Lease of 55 City Road, Southbank with TFE Hotels for the Adina, Southbank Hotel
  • Juilliard Group: on office and retail leasing for their portfolio of CBD, suburban and regional properties
  • Phileo Australia: on office and retail leasing for their portfolio of CBD and suburban properties, and
  • Essendon Fields Airport: on office, retail and industrial leases within the Essendon Fields precinct.

Property finance

  • Gurner and Qualitas: on a luxury $1.2 billion build-to-rent development fund
  • MAKE Ventures: on a joint venture with AustralianSuper in relation to future build-to-rent-to-own residential developments
  • Merricks Capital, as agent, mandated lead arranger and a lender: on a $150 million syndicated term loan facility to Alfasi Property Development to fund the development of a new ten-level retail and office building in Cremorne, Victoria, and
  • VIMG and its joint venture partner, New Hope: on its refinance for a residential construction facility provided by PAG Assets Limited, including cross-collateral springing security arrangements of other sites owned by VIMG.


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