Margaret river pioneers intergenerational living estate

17 May 2024

An Australian first residential estate offering intergenerational living will free up existing housing stock and combat loneliness among seniors in WA’s rapidly growing South West.

Work on the development which includes a unique community country club providing a sports and social hub for residents officially kicked off yesterday (17 May 2024) with Western Australian Housing Minister, the Hon John Carey MLA, and Shire of August Margaret River CEO, Arthur Kyron, turning the first soil.

National developer Yolk Property has partnered with Everland Communities and National retirement specialist Chanje Partners to bring the concept to WA, reinventing the way people of different ages live side by side to create stronger, more resilient communities.

WA Housing Minister John Carey said this intergenerational housing project would bolster housing diversity in the South-West region.

“We’re acutely aware of the current housing market across the country and its impacts on many Western Australians, that’s why I’m here today to welcome and turn the sod on this housing project in Margaret River,” Minister Carey said.

“This type of innovative private housing development being delivered by Yolk Property, Everland Communities and Chanje Partners complements the Cook Government’s record $3.2 billion investment in housing and homelessness measures across the State.”

Chanje Director, Cameron Kirby, said the design illustrated the new-style inter-generational living gaining momentum overseas.

“In contrast to multi-generational living, where the focus is simply on facilities that can be used by several different age groups at various times, inter-generational developments such as Arbour Margaret River take the idea a vital step further,” Mr. Kirby said.

“With resort-style facilities available for younger and older residents to enjoy together, the design actively encourages interaction and supports meaningful connections between seniors and their younger neighbours.

“It builds on the lessons learned during the pandemic when generations came together and discovered the benefits of engaging with each other for socialisation, security and support.”

At Arbour Margaret River residents of all ages will be able to use the community country club’s resort-style facilities which include a function room, heated swimming pool, kids water play, tennis courts, gym, BBQ area, outdoor cinema and café.

This includes people buying a block as well as those moving into the over-55s land lease village being built within the development.

“The land lease village will not be one element of the overall design, rather it has been fully and considerately integrated,” Mr. Kirby said.

Some facilities, such as the indoor heated swimming pool, pool cabana, animal farm, orchard, pickleball, lawn bowls, ten-pin bowling, lounge and private dining room, will be duplicated so residents of the land lease village also have the option of enjoying exclusive-use areas.

An annual or weekly fee to access the facilities will be included in the sales contract, whether purchasing land at Arbour Margaret River or buying a new home in the Arbour Margaret River Land Lease Village.

Sheldon Day, General Manager of Developments at Yolk Property Group said the inter-generational concept had received positive feedback from those already keen to make Arbour Margaret River their home.

“With its strong community focus and enduring appeal for all ages, combined with the increased flexibility offered by FIFO and work-from-home arrangements, Margaret River is perfectly placed to demonstrate what can be achieved through inter-generational design.”

“We’re proud to be playing a leading role in bringing people together in a truly interactive, inter-generational new community.”

Everland Communities CEO, Tao Bourton said it is exciting to be setting a new benchmark for land lease retirement living with the Australian-first concept.

According to the 2021 Census, just over 30 per cent of the 16,791 people living in the Margaret River/Augusta area are over the age of 55. The Shire’s Local Planning Strategy predicts the area’s population will reach 25,000 people by 2036.