SunCity’s first gated project in Penang

GEORGE TOWN: Sunway City Bhd (SunCity) plans to launch its first gated and guarded landed residential project with a gross development value (GDV) of RM800 million in Penang next year.

SunCity recently entered into a sale and purchase agreement (S&P) with Sungai Ara Holdings Sdn Bhd to acquire the 32.74ha site for the project in Sungai Ara at RM38.77 million.

While most developers on the island are reaching for the skies with scarcely available land and escalating land prices, the developer nevertheless has decided to embark on developing landed property in the state.

SunCity managing director for property development, Malaysia, Ho Hon Sang, told The Edge Financial Daily the project would be launched in the third quarter of 2011.

“If we get the necessary approvals, we hope to launch the project earlier. We are planning to build 186 three-storey semi-detached houses with land area of between 3,000 sq ft and 5,600 sq ft and 165 three-storey bungalows with a land area of 4,800 sq ft.

“The project, which will take five years to complete, will be our first foray into the gated and guarded community concept developments here in Penang. This will be a high-end development, with clubhouse facilities, pool, gym and restaurant.

The bungalows are indicatively priced from RM2.7 million to RM3.5 million while the semi-detached units will start from RM1.7 million, he added.

According to Ho, the project located on a gentle hillslope, has a sweeping view of the eastern coast of Penang, with a clear view of the existing bridge and the second Penang Crossing and Pulau Jerejak.

“We believe that if we do it well, we can even market this project overseas, but we must have good location and a good, innovation product,” Ho added.

Most of the buyers for the projects are locals who work overseas, Singaporeans and also those who work in the industrial estates.

While SunCity has embarked on several gated and guarded projects in the Klang Valley, it is just testing the market in Penang, where several other developers have already started the concept.

“These days, with too many security issues in housing estates, buyers feel safer in a gated and guarded area and are willing to pay for services provided,” Ho said.

He added that SunCity was not too keen to jump on the bandwagon to develop super condominiums which had mushroomed all over the island at a staggering pace.

“There is already an oversupply of such units, and unless we have a good location and a saleable product, we will not embark on developing super condominiums,” Ho added.

With the acquisition in Sungai Ara, Ho said SunCity’s landbank in Penang would increase to 213 acres with a GDV of RM2 billion.

Besides that project, SunCity will also launch another project on a 30-acre site in Batu Maung early next year.

The 260-unit residential project, Sunway Cassia with a GDV of RM170 million, will feature three-storey bungalows and link houses priced between RM750,000 and RM2 million.

On the mainland in Bukit Mertajam, SunCity will also launch another residential project on a 20-acre site in Kampung Rawa during the third quarter of 2011.

With a GDV of RM200 million, SunCity is hoping to launch 310 units of three-storey bungalows and three-storey link houses which will be priced between RM520,000 and RM800,000.

Ongoing projects include 98 units of three-storey terrace and three-storey semi-detached houses in Sunway Merica in Sungai Ara, residential units at Sunway Aspera in Sungai Batu, and shophouses in Sunway Perdana Seberang Jaya with a total GDV of RM190 million.

Sunway Perdana is expected to be ready by the end of 2011, while Sunway Merica and Sunway Aspera will be completed by the third quarter of 2011.

SunCity has also just completed another residential project, Sunway Bukit Gambier, with a GDV of RM250 million consisting of 250 three-storey link houses and semi-detached units.

This article appeared on the Property page, The Edge Financial Daily, October 8, 2010.

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