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Revamped Republic Plaza reopens with new tenant app, startup incubator

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Republic Plaza now has a refreshed 24,100 sq ft retail enclave across three levels. The 999-year leasehold property has a gross floor area of 1.1 million sq ft and total net lettable area of around 780,000 sq ft.

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Republic Plaza now has a refreshed 24,100 sq ft retail enclave across three levels. The 999-year leasehold property has a gross floor area of 1.1 million sq ft and total net lettable area of around 780,000 sq ft.

CITY Developments Limited (CDL) on Wednesday morning unveiled the revamped Republic Plaza, its flagship property in Raffles Place, following an extensive S$70 million asset enhancement initiative (AEI) which started in April 2018.

Although the building had previously undergone several enhancements, this was its first major facelift since it was completed in 1996.

At 280 metres tall, the 66-storey skyscraper stands as a Grade A office landmark in the central business district. The 999-year leasehold property now has a gross floor area of 1.1 million square feet (sq ft) and total net lettable area of around 780,000 sq ft.

Its AEI included a makeover of the main lobby, arrival frontage, individual lift lobbies as well as lift modernisation and significant interior enhancements to improve space efficiency.

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The retail podium has also been expanded by 3,400 sq ft of lettable retail space, which was created from partial conversion of the carpark area. Public area layouts were reworked to improve pedestrian traffic, and technical specifications were upgraded to allow a larger variety of food and beverage (F&B) offerings.

Republic Plaza now has a 24,100 sq ft retail enclave spanning three levels, housing close to 40 F&B and retail outlets.

Over 80 per cent of the retail tenants are new to the building, while some returning tenants include TWG Tea, The Herbal Bar and Bose.

Beyond infrastructure and space efficiency upgrades, CDL has also created a proprietary smart building mobile app CityNexus for all tenants.

Through the app, tenants can access value-added services such as building access, meeting room booking, air-conditioning extension request and building feedback submission. For a smooth visitor experience, tenants can provide their guests with direct turnstile entry and book-dedicated VIP parking lots.

There is also an "order-pay-collect" function for office tenants to pre-order their meals from the building's F&B outlets and pick up when ready. United Overseas Bank (UOB) is also providing the F&B tenants with financial and digital solutions through the app. UOB's solutions complement the F&B pre-order function by streamlining end-to-end transaction workflows.

More value-added services will be progressively added to the CityNexus digital platform, CDL said. It will also be potentially rolled out across other CDL office buildings.

The CityNexus app is meant to transform Republic Plaza into a "smart workplace of the future", said Sherman Kwek, group chief executive officer of CDL.

Aside from commercial space, Republic Plaza is also providing a platform to support aspiring social innovators. A unit at the basement has been converted into an incubator and co-working space for startups and social enterprises. This initiative is in partnership with the Singapore Centre for Social Enterprise, United Nations Development Programme, and Social Collider.

The building's revamp reflects CDL's focus on rejuvenating existing assets to unlock value and strengthen its recurring income stream, Mr Kwek said.

"Post AEI, we have seen positive rental reversions at Republic Plaza and achieved strong committed occupancy of over 90 per cent, with the retail space fully leased," he added.

CDL shares closed at S$9.67 on Wednesday, down nine cents or 0.92 per cent.