Rebirth of the Waverley Bowling Club begins with ground breaking ceremony

7th June 2021

Mirvac is not letting the grass grow under its feet. Barely four months after sentering an agreement with Easts Group to redevelop the Waverley Bowling Club, the company today celebrated the start of construction with a ground breaking ceremony.

Rebirth of the Waverley Bowling Club begins with ground breaking ceremony

Men with shovels at Waverley Bowling Club

Mirvac is not letting the grass grow under its feet. Barely four months after entering an agreement with Easts Group to redevelop the Waverley Bowling Club, the company today celebrated the start of construction with a ground breaking ceremony.

The renewal of the site to create two new bowling greens, a new community venue and 55 luxury apartments for those aged over-55 is proceeding at a cracking pace to be completed in time for the bowlers to celebrate their 130th anniversary in 2023 on their home greens.

Bowling at Waverley Bowling Club

Mirvac Head of Residential Stuart Penklis said the company was determined to deliver this project to Mirvac’s high standards creating a new community venue and greens worthy of the club’s rich history.

“Today marks the turning point for both the Easts Group and Waverley Bowling Club when we begin construction of what will be a magnificent new facility to be enjoyed by Club members and the wider community,” said Mr Penklis.

“We are extremely proud to be entrusted with the delivery of such a historic site and look forward to working with Easts to build a new legacy.”

The delivery agreement was only signed with Easts Group in December last year and construction begins before the commencement of sales, scheduled for the second half of this year.

“Easts Group and Waverley Bowling Club worked closely with the community for many years to finalise a proposal that has won broad support,” said Mr Penklis.

Waverley Bowling Club President Patrick Fitzsimons said that after eight years of negotiations, to see the redevelopment finally begin was a moment for the history books.

Speech at Waverley Bowling Club

“We are the sixth oldest bowling club in Sydney and there is a lot of history attached to the Waverley Bowling Club,” said Mr Fitzsimons. “Once history is gone, it’s gone forever whereas this is the Phoenix rising from the ashes, coming back better than it ever was.

“It will be the best bowling club in the eastern suburbs. I already have people asking when it will open, not just bowlers but families and people in the community. This has always been a little oasis in the eastern suburbs where people can come and play barefoot bowls or just sit outside and watch the competition bowlers.”

Waverley Bowling Club Lady President Marilyn Eccles said the club was now in a ‘very good place’.

“There is a sense of coming full circle,” said Ms Eccles. “When the club was formed in 1893, we were based in Bondi Junction near Easts and we share the same red white and blue colours as the Roosters so there is a feeling of truly coming together.

“We are a club that has always been prepared to chart new territory. We were the first to integrate men and women bowlers into the one club and the first after Paddington to introduce barefoot bowls. The local community wanted us to stay here and that is exactly what we plan to do. This is our home and home is where the heart is.”

“The redevelopment of the club secures the future of the Waverley Bowling Club and delivers a valuable community asset to be enjoyed by people old and young,” said Mr Politis.

“The fact that construction is beginning only four months after signing the agreement with Mirvac is a good sign that we have the right partner and the future is looking brighter than ever.”

Mirvac has not yet begun marketing but has already started fielding enquiry from locals looking to secure a new Mirvac quality home.

“Not surprisingly there has been quite a rush of enquiry about purchasing in the development,” said Mr Penklis. “Mirvac’s first apartment development was in Rose Bay back in 1972 and the eastern suburbs was our favoured location for many years, earning us a lot of extremely loyal customers.

“Our last residential project was The Moreton in Bondi which sold out in a single weekend. With only 55 apartments in this project and development sites as good as this one so rare in the east, we are anticipating healthy demand.” The 55 apartments will be dispersed across four buildings including the Birrell St corner apartments with the new club facilities at ground level overlooking the greens. This building offers some of the best ocean views, and will also have a landscaped rooftop with residential communal facilities such as barbecue and outdoor dining for the private use of the residents.

In a touching reminder of the site’s earlier history as St Gabriel’s School, President of the Old Girls’ Union Glen Barnwell entrusted Mirvac with an etched glass panel, the only known remnant to have survived demolition. “We are all still emotionally invested in the school and it is the wish of the Old Girls that this last known bit of the school finds a permanent place on the site,” said Ms Barnwell.

Shovelling at Waverley Bowling Club

The project’s integration of the public and private realm is similar in concept to Mirvac’s highly successful Marrick & Co development in the inner-west suburb of Marrickville which is located alongside the new Marrickville Public Library.

Waverley is Mirvac’s second recent project in Sydney to begin construction ahead of a sales launch, underlining the company’s confidence in the market and ability to secure sales.

“Mirvac’s fully integrated model means we are designing and constructing the development which enables the confidence in dealing with one party. As a result, we are one of the few development companies in Australia with the capacity to get new projects out of the ground, knowing that our reputation for quality will stand up well in any market,” said Mr Penklis.