Real News‎ > ‎2012‎ > ‎December 2012‎ > ‎

05 December 2012

5th December, Wednesday




Number of resale flats down 19%

Source: The Straits Times

The number of resale flats has diminished for the second year running, falling 19 per cent, according to the Housing Board's latest annual report.

The figures for the year ending this March showed resale application numbers dropping to 24,331, compared with 30,061 the previous year.

While stricter ownership conditions for resale flats and tighter financing rules played a part, the HDB said the dip in numbers could be largely due to ramped-up housing supply.

There were 44 projects offering 28,424 flats launched in that period, a 64 per cent increase on the number of flats in the previous financial year. This has served to soak up some demand in the red-hot public housing market.

The report shows a total of 33,140 bookings were made for new flats in the year, a 75 per cent increase over the previous year's 18,849 bookings.


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URA launches F&B site in Punggol for public tender

Source: Business Times

A uniquely zoned commercial site, specifically for food and beverage (F&B) use, was launched at Punggol Point for public tender by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) Tuesday.

Unlike most sites launched by URA which are typically zoned under commercial, residential or mixed-development categories, the specific usage for the Punggol Point site could suggest the establishment of a distinctive F&B hub.

"The government has certain plans to develop Punggol into the vision they want, which is why the land parcels in Punggol have very specific zoning," explained Lee Sze Teck, senior manager for research at Dennis Wee Group.

The subject F&B site, which has an area of 11,606.6 sq m, is expected to complement existing and upcoming attractions in the Punggol area such as the horse-riding centre and the development of Coney Island as a regional park. The site will be sold with a lease term of 15 years and will contribute to the overall vision of Punggol Point as a key recreation destination.

The maximum permissible gross floor area, inclusive of outdoor refreshment area, is 3,000 sq m.

Taking these past transactions and current property prices in consideration, Mr Lee said: "The bid could attract both F&B operators and developers who lease out the space. The estimated top bid could be in the range of $35 and $40 million."


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Novena white site attracts top bid of $493m

Source: The Straits Times

A bullish top bid of almost $500 million was lodged for a mixed-use site next to Novena MRT station in a nine-cornered contest Tuesday.

The bid of $492.5 million - or $1,632 per sq ft (psf) per plot ratio (ppr) - is the highest ever submitted for a white site, which can accommodate a variety of uses. It easily beat the old record of $1,409 psf ppr lodged for a white site at Marina View by MGPA in September 2007.

Experts say the generally high bids could have been driven by the good sale prices for some strata-titled retail and office spaces and medical suites, and the buoyant tourism industry.

The top offer came from a consortium comprising Hoi Hup Realty, Sunway Developments and Hoi Hup JV Development, whose shareholders include Straits Construction and Hoi Hup Realty.

CapitaLand units Swift One, Swift Two and Taipan Trustee came in second with a $444.9 million bid. Other bidders included Far East Orchard, Sim Lian Group, Guthrie and UEM Land, which placed the lowest bid of $340.5 million, or $1,128 psf ppr.

The 6,677 sq m plot on the corner of Thomson and Irrawaddy roads has a maximum gross floor area of 28,043 sq m, at least 30 per cent of which must be allocated for a hotel.

The rest can be for residential, office or retail and complementary commercial uses, the Urban Redevelopment Authority said.

Hoi Hup told The Straits Times that, apart from the mandated 30 per cent hotel use, the remaining space will be for medical suites and shops, the latter to be in the basement and first storey.

Mr Lee Sze Teck, senior manager of training, research and consultancy at Dennis Wee Group, noted that the Novena area has not seen a new supply of office space for some time. Demand for strata-titled office space in the fringe central business district area has typically been strong, which has likely attracted developers, he added. Medical suites can also be developed on the site, he said.

Another analyst said the top bid indicated that medical suites, rather than homes, were likely to be built. "The strong bidding also factors in the ultra-convenience with the MRT station below and the shopping and eating facilities at Novena Square and other amenities nearby," he said.


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