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Marina View 'white' site, Kampong Java Road residential site and Tampines Ave 10 exec condo site released for sale under GLS

THE Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) and the Housing & Development Board (HDB) have released two residential sites and one "white" site for sale under the second half 2018 Government Land Sales (GLS) Programme, which could in all yield about 2,000 residential units.

These make up the first GLS sites released since revised regulations announced in October that will raise the minimum average size of units and lower the maximum number of units allowed in new private flat and condominium developments outside the central area from early 2019. The rules will apply to new development applications for projects submitted on or after Jan 17 next year.

One site released under the Confirmed List is a Kampong Java Road plot spanning 11,643.3 sq m with a maximum gross floor area (GFA) of 32,602 sq m, which can yield 435 units as estimated by the URA. Schools such as Anglo-Chinese School (Junior) and Etonhouse Pre-School (Newton) are located nearby, as is Newton Food Centre.

This site would be "a litmus test" of the market given the revised unit size regulations, said Tricia Song, head of research for Singapore at Colliers International, who estimates a S$2,100 psf (per square foot) average selling price, and a land bid of S$1,350 psf ppr (per square foot per plot ratio) or S$470 million.

"Response to the Kampong Java site could provide an indication of developers’ confidence in the high-end home market after a spate of collective sales in the area and the recent announcement on revised unit size guidelines," she added.

The site is located just outside the central area and therefore should be subject to a minimum average unit size of 85 sq m, she said.

Nicholas Mak, executive director at ZACD Group, said that the Kampong Java Road would likely attract "healthy interest" due to its prime location, though he pitted the reasonable top bid at S$421 million to $456 million, or S$1,200 to S$1,300 psf ppr due to the cooling measures.

"Although this site is located in District 9, it is outside the areas with the stricter development regulation regarding unit sizes," he said. "Hence it is not subject to the new average minimum unit size of 100 sq m. This would enhance its attraction to some developers."

The Tampines Ave 10 site, released by the HDB, spans 24,938.7 sq m with a maximum GFA of 69,829 sq m. About 695 units could be built on the site, but the number of dwelling units is capped at 700.

Analysts believe the EC site would be hotly contested given the short supply in the market and competitive bidding for the EC sites seen this year.

Tenders for Anchorvale Crescent and Canberra Link in September saw seven and nine bids, with the top bids coming in at S$576 and S$558 psf ppr respectively.

Huttons Asia's Lee Sze Teck said: "Tampines is the first regional centre in Singapore and a sought after place to live in. The parcel sits in a mature estate with plenty of amenities like Our Tampines Hub, connectivity options like Tampines Downtown line and green spaces like Bedok Reservoir."

Colliers' Ms Song said: "The new minimum average unit size of 85 sq m should also have minimum impact for ECs as ECs are targeted at families in the first place and the average unit size suggested by the development cap of 700 units is well above the 85 sq m."

She expects seven to nine bidders and a top land bid of S$560 psf ppr or S$420 million.  

ZACD's Mr Mak thinks the reasonable top bid in the tender for this site could range from S$398 million to S$428 million, or S$530 to S$570 psf ppr.

"However, it would not be surprising if a developer were to submit a very bullish bid, surpassing S$430 million," he said.

Both sites have 99-year leases. Their tenders will close on Jan 15, 2019. 

The URA "white" site at Marina View, next to V on Shenton, which is envisaged to be a mixed-use development with a hotel component with retail and food and beverage uses, is available for application under the Reserve List.

This 99-year site located at Marina Bay could yield 905 residential units and 540 hotel rooms. It comprises two plots - the 7,817.6 sq m land parcel, and a subterranean stratum 18 sq m in size. In all, the site has a maximum GFA of 101,629 sq m.

A minimum 51,000 sq m is slated to be for residential use, and 26,000 sq m is to be for hotel rooms and hotel-related uses.

There is a maximum 2,000 sq m allowable for optional office use and another maximum 2,000 sq m for commercial use.

"We expect this site to offer an attractive proposition to developers with hotel interests or developers with varying interests can form a joint venture," said Ms Song of Colliers. "Given the numerous permutations of the final product, we estimate the top bid could range from S$1,380 to 1,600 psf ppr or S$1.5 to 1.75 billion."

Mr Mak said the tender could attract about four to eight bids, or with reasonable bids coming in at S$1.56 billion to S$1.75 billion, or S$1,426 to S$1,600 psf ppr.

A "white" site at Central Boulevard was sold in November 2016 to an IOI Properties joint venture. Its top bid came in at S$2.57 billion, or S$1,689 psf ppr. It was announced this year that IOI Properties has removed Hongkong Land as joint venture partner and will develop it alone.

A "white" site is a land parcel where a range of uses are allowed, although the government is likely to stipulate a minimum component of a specific use or specific uses to meet its planning intentions.

"Its close proximity to prestigious developments such as Asia Square and Marina One makes it an attractive location for a distinctive mixed use development," the URA said on its website. "The future development will also offer city living opportunities and enhance the vibrancy in the area."

Marina Bay and Downtown MRT stations as well as the upcoming Shenton Way Thomson-East Coast Line MRT station are close by.

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