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South Beach project to cost $2.5b: CityDev

(SINGAPORE) City Developments’ upcoming mixed-use project along Beach Road will cost some $2.5 billion in all – including the land cost of some $1.69 billion – the company’s chairman Kwek Leng Beng said yesterday.

Mr Kwek was speaking to reporters after signing the building agreement for the site.

CityDev, together with its partners Istithmar (part of the Dubai World Group) and US-based Elad Group, secured the 3.5-hectare site in a government land tender in September. The three partners hold a one-third stake each in the project.

The development, which will be called South Beach, is set to become a ‘revolutionary New Eco-Quarter in Singapore’ when it is completed by 2012, CityDev said. Construction will start next year.

South Beach will have premium office space, luxury hotels, residential apartments and retail space with a total gross floor area (GFA) of some 1.6 million square feet, CityDev said.

The partners are required to set aside at least 40 per cent of the total GFA for office use, and another minimum 30 per cent of the total GFA for hotel use.

In line with this, the consortium is planning two luxury hotels. One of the hotels will be a high-end boutique hotel with about 250 rooms, while the other will be a five-star hotel with about 450 rooms, CityDev said. The partners intend to bring in upmarket hotel brands for both hotels.

The partners are also looking to bring in branded residences for the luxury apartments they will be building on the site – such as The Plaza in New York, which is owned by Elad.

Looking ahead, Mr Kwek said he believed that the property market in Singapore is in a period of ‘consolidation’ brought on by the sub-prime mortgage crisis in the US. ‘In 2008, a lot will depend on how much the sub-prime recovers and whether the US will go into a deep recession,’ he said. ‘2008 will have a little storm here and there, but Asia Pacific will grow.’

For Singapore, Mr Kwek said that there is still a potential upside for mid-range home prices, which are still below their historical peaks.


Source: Business Times 5 Dec 07

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