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City Towers, Sixth Avenue Centre and Kovan Apts join en bloc wagon

The two Bukit Timah projects are seeking S$355m and S$90.5m respectively while Kovan development is asking S$33 million

City Towers (above) can be rebuilt to a GFA of 20,394 sqm while Sixth Ave Centre and Kovan Apartments have allowable gross floor areas of 4,183 sq m and about 2,700 sq m respectively.

City Towers can be rebuilt to a GFA of 20,394 sqm while Sixth Ave Centre (above) and Kovan Apartments have allowable gross floor areas of 4,183 sq m and about 2,700 sq m respectively.

City Towers can be rebuilt to a GFA of 20,394 sqm while Sixth Ave Centre and Kovan Apartments (above) have allowable gross floor areas of 4,183 sq m and about 2,700 sq m respectively.


THE en bloc fervour shows no sign of abating. Residential and commercial owners continue to be upbeat about the prospects of collective sales as Wednesday saw the announcement of three more projects being marketed en bloc.

The first is freehold development City Towers at 317-325Q Bukit Timah Road, which will be launched for collective sale for S$355 million by tender on Thursday.

The owners' reserve price of S$355 million includes a development charge (DC) of about S$3.5 million to intensify land use.

It works out to a land rate of S$1,633 per square foot per plot ratio (psf ppr) - lower than the S$1,840 psf ppr achieved for the collective sale of nearby Crystal Tower in December.

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Tang Wei Leng, managing director at Colliers International, which is marketing the project, believes that the high-end private residential market is going to recover further, after prices fell by about 20 per cent since June 2013.

"City Towers presents a good opportunity for developers to add a plum District 10 site to their portfolio in preparation for the potential pick-up in prime home prices in the coming years," she said.

The freehold development - which was completed in the 1960s - comprises 77 units of apartments and maisonettes, a penthouse unit and a shop unit.

Depending on the size of their units, each owner stands to receive S$2.45 million to S$10.17 million from the sale of the development, which she said is more than double the open market value of the individual units.

The sales committee had managed to garner more than 80 per cent approval from owners to launch the tender within just three months. This is the owners' fourth attempt at a collective sale.

The upscale Bukit Timah area has seen several successful collective sales recently, including Royalville and Crystal Tower which were both sold to Allgreen Properties for S$477.9 million and S$180.7 million respectively. Off Dunearn Road, Mayfair Gardens was sold to Oxley Holdings for S$311 million.

City Towers sits on a land plot that spans 9,711.3 sq m with a 65 m frontage to Bukit Timah Road. It is zoned "residential" and has a gross plot ratio of 2.1 under the 2014 Master Plan. Subject to relevant approvals, the site can be redeveloped to a 24-storey apartment block offering about 190 new homes of 1,098 sq ft each - on the proposed total gross floor area (GFA) of 20,394 sq m.

The site is not subject to the pre-application feasibility study, which requires developers to assess the traffic impact of increasing the number of dwelling units on the area, and propose car-lite initiatives to the to Land Transport Authority for approval.

The second site being marketed is Sixth Avenue Centre, another freehold and mixed-use development which consists of seven shops and 18 apartments.

The development occupies a land area of 1,394.4 sq m. Flanking a prominent corner with double street frontage along the main Bukit Timah Road and Sixth Avenue respectively, it is zoned for commercial and residential use with a gross plot ratio of 3.0 under the 2014 Master Plan.

The site may be developed up to five storeys with an allowable gross floor area of 4,183.2 sq m. The building was completed in the 1980s.

Subject to approvals by the authorities, the site can potentially accommodate a development with retail component and 35 apartments averaging 753 sq ft each.

Sixth Avenue Centre has an indicative guide price of S$90.5 million, or a land rate of S$2,022 psf ppr (based on the allowable GFA of 4,183.2 sq m), after factoring in a DC of about S$526,000.

The development is located in an established residential enclave surrounded by condominiums as well as landed homes and good class bungalows. Guthrie House, a commercial building, is situated directly opposite.

Its tender closes at 3 pm on Jan 31. It is marketed by Savills Singapore, which is also marketing Kovan Apartments, a four-storey freehold residential redevelopment site along Kovan Road.

This latter site comprises 16 units and was completed around 1995. With a site area of 21,193 sq ft and Masterplan (2014) plot ratio of 1.4, the site can be redeveloped into a boutique development of gross floor area about 29,670 sq ft with 27 units averaging 1,075 sq ft. It is surrounded mostly by low-rise private residences.

The asking price is S$33 million, excluding an estimated DC of S$2.57 million as the site is not fully built to its allowable plot ratio. The tender closes on Feb 5 at 3pm.

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