The ambitious One Queensbridge Tower project in Melbourne’s Southbank is in trouble after the Victorian Government turned down the request from developer Crown Resorts and joint-venture partner Schiavello Group to delay the construction start date.

The $1.75 billion, 90-storey One Queensbridge Tower project had received approval from the Victorian Government two years ago subject to the condition that construction would begin this month. The Government’s decision had been criticised at the time since the project received approval for a size that exceeded by three times what the planning rules allowed for the site.

Located opposite the Crown Casino, the proposed tower, at 323 metres in height, would have been the tallest building in all of Australia. The mixed-use development offered 708 luxury residential apartments and a 388-room hotel.

Inability to obtain funding for the project by the developers has been cited as a reason for the request to put off the start date on construction.

Crown has always maintained that the project was subject to “obtaining financial arrangements that were satisfactory to Crown and Schiavello". Since these arrangements couldn’t be achieved before the construction commencement date specified by the planning approval, Crown and Schiavello had applied for a planning extension last month.

The casino operator said in a statement that “Crown retains a 50 percent ownership interest in the land and will consider the next steps for the property in conjunction with Schiavello”.