Refurbishment will not affect rentals

KUALA LUMPUR: Rental rates in Sungei Wang Plaza will not be affected after its 12-month long refurbishment costing RM30 million. This was revealed by complex manager FK Tang at a media launch on Dec 6.

“I would say rents will remain status quo because the refurbishment is still new. We don’t know yet if there will be a better response from tenants because the renovations have just been completed. If rentals are to increase, this will be gradual in tandem with the economy.

“For the past 36 years, Sungei Wang Plaza has consistently remained one of the top shopping centres in the country. One of the keys to its continued success is its ability to remain relevant in spite of the changing times and intense competition, especially from the newer shopping malls.

“As this is a mall with strata titles, the financing for the refurbishment is from the individual owners themselves,” he said.

Although Tang did not comment on the exact contribution by CapitaMalls Malaysia Trust, the owner of the plaza, he said, “CapitaMalls owns 61.9% of the complex, so out of the RM30 million, you can deduce its contribution. Of course it is one of the biggest contributors.”

He said with the completion of the nearby mass rapid transit station in 2017, Sungei Wang Plaza expects a higher influx of customers.

The refurbishment included new ceilings and tiles on each floor, a freshly repainted façade, upgraded lift lobbies and washrooms, addition of directory kiosks throughout the mall, improved mall signage, customer service stand, a new modern-looking stage as well as new balustrades and lighting at the main atrium.
Outside the shopping complex a 132m covered walkway has been built at the main entrance. The RM2.3 million walkway, named “Sungei Wang Walk”, is equipped with bright lighting, CCTV cameras, upgraded taxi stands, and decorations. The walkway is convenient for pedestrians in Bukit Bintang as it links the complex to Jalan Imbi and Jalan Bukit Bintang’s monorail station.

Businesses remained open as usual throughout the refurbishment which started at the end of last year. Much of the work was done at night. This is the second major refurbishment undertaken by the complex since it opened in 1977. The first refurbishment was done in 1992.

Sungei Wang Plaza has an aggregate retail floor area of 800,000 sq ft with up to 800 shoplots. The strata-titled property is run by Sungei Wang Plaza Management Corp.

(from left) Sungai Wang Plaza Management Corp’s administration manager Norzilah Abd Kamal; operating manager Yeoh Chin Leong; marketing and communications senior manager KK Lim; complex manager FK Tang; finance manager Lee Lay Choo; and security manager Pow Kim Guan at the launch of Sungei Wang Walk.

This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on December 13, 2013.

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