Mention Bukit Jalil and the first thing that comes to mind is the stadium. This small suburb which lies approximately 20km south of Kuala Lumpur city centre was a former rubber plantation estate known as Bukit Jalil Estates.
It was acquired by the government in the 90s to develop the Kompleks Sukan Negara (National Sports Complex) which hosted the 1998 Commonwealth Games. Along with it, the area was spruced up to welcome the international visitors.
Just over two decades later, the nation’s beloved “sporting capital” has become one of the most prime locations for property in Kuala Lumpur. How so?
For a start, Bukit Jalil is easily accessible via major highways such as the Damansara-Puchong Expressway (LDP), Shah Alam Expressway (KESAS), Maju Expressway (MEX), New Pantai Expressway (NPE) and the toll-free Bukit Jalil Highway. It is also well-served by public transportation with Rapid KL bus and four Light Rail Transit (LRT) train stations within a 3km radius: Bukit Jalil, Awan Besar, Sri Petaling and Muhibbah.
It’s not just a sports hub
With sports coursing through its veins, Bukit Jalil houses not one or two, but four stadiums. Taking centre stage would be the Bukit Jalil National Stadium, the largest stadium in the country and the second largest in Southeast Asia.
And in conjunction with the 29th Southeast Asian Games in 2017, the entire sports complex was rejuvenated as KL Sports City in two phases. The first phase mainly focused on the national stadium, Putra Indoor Stadium (now renamed Axiata Arena), National Aquatic Centre and the National Hockey Stadium. In addition, Phase 1 also saw better pedestrian access as well as added jogging and cycling trails.
The second phase comprising serviced apartments, convention centre, sports-centric retail mall and many more is due to be completed by 2021.
Senior negotiator at Reapfield Properties Prabu Jai Balan tells EdgeProp.my that Bukit Jalil has grown by leaps and bounds since the 1998 Commonwealth Games. “Today, with developments such as Bukit Jalil City and Pavilion Bukit Jalil, we can anticipate a completely self-sustaining township. With greater commercial activity, this means greater inflows into the area.
“Moreover, with the advent of Technology Park Malaysia, a large number of tech companies (both local and MNCs) operate here in Bukit Jalil, including MIMOS, SIRIM, IRIS Corp Bhd, Astro and more,” says Prabu.
According to Prabu, two new office towers neighbouring the upcoming Pavilion Bukit Jalil are in the midst of commencing operations and this would attract businesses too.
There is no shortage of educational institutions as well. Besides the Bukit Jalil Sports School (first sports school in Malaysia), there are a few local and international schools in the area such as the well-reputed SJK (C) Lai Meng. Institutions of higher learning such as the International Medical University (IMU) and Asia Pacific University (APU) also add to the diverse demographic of Bukit Jalil.
Despite all the developments, Bukit Jalil has maintained its green lungs. The sprawling 80-acre Bukit Jalil Recreational Park is very popular with joggers. Managed by Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL), a notable highlight of the park is the international garden which showcases themed gardens from 10 countries. There is also a dedicated exercise area for people with disabilities.
According to Raine & Horne International Zaki + Partners Sdn Bhd associate director James Tan, there are not many areas in the Klang Valley that has a big park like this as land prices are high. “[Parks] have become a necessity, no longer a luxury,” says Tan.
Next to the park lies the Berjaya Clubs’ Bukit Jalil Golf and Country Resort. The 18-hole golf course is located on a 165-acre site amidst lush greenery which offers scenic views not just for its members, but its surrounding high-rises. One of the most talked about golf courses in the Klang Valley, it is touted as an ideal recreational getaway for avid golfers.
Property hot spot
According to Reapfield’s Prabu, those who buy properties in Bukit Jalil are generally millennials from the upper-middle class income bracket seeking to raise a family. “They invest here because of the accessibility to the city centre, wide range of amenities and the fairly affordable property prices,” noting that condominiums priced between RM400,000 to RM700,000 are the most sought-after properties.
“We also see a trend of buyers from neighbouring mature townships relocating to Bukit Jalil. The older generations seek smaller homes while the young working adults leave the roost to seek properties with a wide array of amenities. Properties in Bukit Jalil offer both,” adds Prabu.
Raine & Horne Tan concurs, saying that it is increasingly becoming a sought-after address for the middle- to high-income class and young working professionals. “This has encouraged many developers to come into [Bukit Jalil]. Thus, the locality has enjoyed rapid development over the past few years.
“The high-rise strata properties are generally the most popular when considering affordability and location,” says Tan.
Despite the current slow property market, the prices of residential properties in Bukit Jalil are generally holding up. According to data obtained by EdgeProp.my, the average transacted price per sq ft for high-rise residences here has increased over the years and remained stable from RM458 psf in 2015 to RM481 psf in 2018.
“As landed homes have become too pricey due to limited supply and high land prices, most of the newer properties are strata properties which are more affordable and targeted at the young and middle working class,” says Tan.
He adds that the township is maturing steadily and despite the current economic slowdown, a number of high-rise developments still enjoy capital appreciation.
For instance, some units at Berjaya Land’s KM1 East Condominium in Bukit Jalil have seen capital appreciation of between 30% and 39% from 2013 to 2018, according to the developer. Serviced residences at The Link 2, another project by Berjaya Land in Bukit Jalil, have recorded price appreciation of about 12% to 18% from 2014 to 1H2019.
Condominium The Treez at Bukit Jalil has also held up well in the current market slowdown with units there having achieved a compound annual growth rate in transacted price per sq ft of about 7.1% over the period of 2015 to 2018, based on data by real estate firm Rahim & Co.
Meanwhile, Prabu says it is a matter of demand and supply. “With pre-existing and upcoming exciting developments and amenities in the area, owning a home in Bukit Jalil is enticing. The engine that kick-started this would be Pavilion Bukit Jalil.
“Bukit Jalil fits the puzzle with a number of catalysts such as freehold land status with a Kuala Lumpur address, great accessibility and attractive amenities.
“The high-rise residential market is still holding steady in Bukit Jalil and I expect a stronger market to pan out with the arrival of more commercial properties within the vicinity,” notes Prabu.
A great place to live
According to WEREG Properties’ estate agent Wilson Law, who has been a Bukit Jalil resident since 2001, there are many local and international homebuyers moving into Bukit Jalil over the past five years.
“The locals are ‘migrating’ from nearby matured townships like Puchong, Taman OUG and Sri Petaling due to Bukit Jalil’s [convenient] location and greenery.
“We have served many [homebuyers] from Puchong and Kinrara who have decided to move here because they will have to pass by Bukit Jalil to get to the city (via MEX or KL-Seremban Highway). By relocating to Bukit Jalil, they can save half the time on traffic,” Law explains.
Adding that Sri Petaling and Taman OUG are both rather matured townships, Law states that there are many retirees who buy properties in Bukit Jalil for their children to be able to live close to them.
Law stresses that demand will rise as more businesses enter the market via commercial properties, which in turn will increase the number of visitors, tenants, buyers, and residents in Bukit Jalil.
For those considering to settle down in Bukit Jalil, Raine & Horne’s Tan has this simple advice: “Go for it. You have schools, a toll-free highway, shopping and recreational facilities and it is not that far from the city. It has LRTs too.”
Or as Prabu puts it: “Take advantage of the well-connected township, freehold status and outstanding amenities that Bukit Jalil provides while at the same time, anticipate having an exclusive mall [Pavilion] in your vicinity.”