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Sengkang Central GLS site draws seven bids

cecilia.chow@bizedge.com

The tender for Sengkang Central government land (GLS) site closed on June 21 with seven bids. The tender was for the residential and commercial site was launched under the concept and price tender conditions almost similar to that of the Hillview Rise GLS site that closed on May 3, and the Holland Road GLS site – won by a Far East Organization-led consortium with a bid of $1.21 billion in May.

The site at Sengkang Central is located next to the Buangkok MRT station. It has a land area of 37,254.9 sqm (401,008 sq ft) and a plot ratio of 2.1, which means it can yield a maximum gross floor area (GFA) of 78,236 sqm (842,125 sq ft). “The site presents strong potential to be the landmark of the Sengkang-Buangkok vicinity,” says Desmond Sim, CBRE head of research for Singapore and Southeast Asia.

 

The Sengkang Central GLS mixed-use development site is located adjacent to the Buangkok MRT station (Credit: URA)

 

Zoned for a mixed residential-cum-commercial development and envisioned to be “an integrated community hub to meet the needs of the residents in Buangkok”, amenities could include a hawker centre, community hub, childcare centre, retail shops, as well as public rail and bus transport facilities, notes Nicholas Mak, executive director of ZACD Group.

Out of the seven bids, six were joint venture parties. The only one who went solo and submitted two bids with two different concepts was Far East Organization. The giant privately held property developer had submitted three bids with three different concepts for the Holland Road residential-and-commercial site.

 

Joint venture partners

The Sengkang Central GLS site saw Singapore’s two biggest listed property groups -- CapitaLand and City Developments Ltd (CDL) – joining forces again; they teamed up for the Hillview Rise GLS site too, where they submitted two different bids and two different concepts.

Teaming up for a third time are Hong Kong-listed, Singapore-headquartered developer Qingjian Realty and Singapore-listed real estate and healthcare group Perennial Real Estate Holdings. They jointly participated in the Holland Road GLS site and struck a partnership to co-develop Goodluck Garden, purchased en bloc for $610 million in April.

Keppel Land and Wing Tai Holdings, joint developers of the recently launched 613-unit The Garden Residences in Serangoon, are also partners again for the Sengkang Central site. Singapore Press Holdings and Kajima Development, who are joint developers of the upcoming mixed-use scheme, Woodleigh Residences and Woodleigh Mall at Bidadari, have also joined forces again for Sengkang Central.

Partners for the first time are Singapore-based mainland Chinese developer MCC Land tying up with Guangzhou-based Chinese developer Grantral Land, which owns Grantral Mall at Clementi. MCC Land is the developer of the 731-unit The Poiz Residences which sits on top of a 50,000 sq ft retail-cum-lifestyle complex named The Poiz Centre, which is linked directly to the Potong Pasir MRT station. The Poiz is expected to be completed this year.

 

Four out of six groups are sponsors of REITs 

Four out of the six groups of bidders at the close of the tender are sponsors of REITs listed on the Singapore Exchange, notes ZACD's Mak. "This is not surprising as it is increasingly difficult to acquire well-located shopping malls in Singapore at attractive prices," he adds. "Hence, these developers would have to acquire land to develop malls." However, he notes that the number of bids submitted for the Sengkang Central site was lower than the nine bids submitted for the Hillview Rise site.

It’s also just half the number of bids received for the Holland Road GLS site - 15 bids from 10 bidders. “More than half of the unsuccessful bidders for the Holland Road parcel did not participate in [the Sengkang Central] tender,” says. Ong Teck Hui, JLL national director for research & consultancy.

Given the size of the site and the relatively technical conditions related to the tender, it’s not surprising why the majority of bidders for the Sengkang Central site are consortiums or big players in the property market, observes ZACD’s Mak.

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