SelProp prepares master plan

KUALA LUMPUR: Selangor Properties Bhd (SelProp) is in the process of drawing up a master plan for 34 acres of land in Damansara Heights. It is one of the few remaining parcels of land available for large-scale development in the area.

Chief operating officer Chong Koon San told reporters after the company AGM yesterday SelProp is currently developing the master plan but declined to reveal details.

“It’s still too early for me to comment on the master plan,” he said.

Asset-rich SelProp is one of the largest landowners in the affluent Damansara Heights area. It has over the years developed small parcels that are well tenanted.

Among them are Wisma HELP, Menara Milenium, Kompleks Pejabat Damansara, Wisma Damansara and SPB Towers.

“This development on the 34 acres will be closely watched as its connectivity to the MRT and proximity to an affluent neighbourhood could outshine other retail outlets in the area,” said an industry player.

At the moment, the two major retail outlets in the area are Bangsar Shopping Centre and Bangsar Village.

The value of the property there has increased significantly due to the MRT line that will cut across its land. The Sungai Buloh-Kajang MRT line will have two stations in the area where SPB’s properties are located.

In its annual report for financial year 2012, the company believes that the two MRT stations will provide greater connectivity and people mobility between its properties.

To facilitate the MRT project, the government through MRT Corp has compulsorily acquired parcels of land from SPB.

At the moment, the company is involved in negotiations with the government that is looking to acquire 18,682 square meters of land in Damansara Heights.

This parcel of land is the biggest that the government has earmarked for compulsory acquisition from SPB. It is five times larger than the total amount acquired from SPB previously.

SPB is fighting the compulsory acquisition and towards this end, has applied for leave for judicial review to quash the notice of acquisition for the land. A hearing on the matter has been fixed for June 24, 2013.

During previous negotiations for compulsory acquisition of tracts of land, SPB had successfully reduced the amount of land to be acquired.

Todate, the Land Administrator of Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur has awarded SPB compensation to the tune of RM31 million for relinquishing four separate tracts of land totalling 3,067 square meters.

Should the company be successful in the negotiation relating to the last remaining parcel of land, the proceeds are expected to contribute positively to the company’s future earnings and provide it with the financial muscle to develop its underutilised landbank.

SPB’s mainstay of property development is concentrated in the Klang Valley. It also has a 51% stake in HELP International Corp Bhd, the listed entity that owns and operates HELP University and its satellite campuses.

The first phase of the MRT line, which runs from Sungai Buloh to Semantan, is expected to be operational by the end of 2016.

This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on April 25, 2013.

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