License article

Legal eagle nest finally comes to market

The Law Institute of Victoria has finally moved to put its long-held CBD headquarters on the market, some six months after a sales process was first mooted.

The moves comes shortly after fellow legal education outfit, the Leo Cussen Institute of Law, sold its city base for $33 million to Singapore-listed property group Roxy Pacific.

The LIV building is the first substantial city property to come to market in 2018.

The legal society has owned the nine-storey modernist office building at 470 Bourke Street for nearly 40 years. It hired property consultants Charter Keck Cramer in August to advise on the process.

A price of more than $30 million is expected for the 3339-square-metre building which is on a large site of 916 square metres, backing onto Little Bourke Street. There is a 409-square-metre car park at the rear – facing the Supreme Court – that could be developed.

Colliers International agent Matt Stagg, who is handling the expressions of interest campaign, said the LIV is offering the building on a six-month leaseback with three three-month options.


The Leo Cussen deal, also negotiated by Mr Stagg, involved a six-month leaseback term, but with two three-month options.

"The time is right to seek modern office accommodation for a new era," said LIV chief executive Nerida Wallace.

“The LIV is examining options to ensure we operate from a fit-for-purpose building," Ms Wallace said.

“Non-profit organisations acquired these assets 30 to 40 years ago. But the city has become more popular since then and values have risen accordingly," Mr Stagg said.

“These assets require capital investment and it makes sense to sell, bank the cash and relocate to more contemporary premises,” he said.

Future uses would probably include refurbishment for another owner-occupier or a strata office sub-division, which is popular in the legal precinct.

The LIV paid $1.5 million for the building in the 1970s. The distinctive curtain-walled building was designed by Melbourne architect and former lord mayor Bernard Evans in 1959.