MRCB to offer more residences at TODs
KUALA LUMPUR (May 4): Malaysian Resources Corp Bhd (MRCB), the master developer of KL Sentral, sees rising demand for residential properties at transit-oriented developments (TODs) by city dwellers and aims to tap more into this property segment.
MRCB chief operating officer Kwan Joon Hoe said people’s perception towards the TOD concept has changed as the public transportation system in Malaysia progresses and matures. People also like the convenience and easy accessibility that transport hubs provide.
“Like in Japan and Hong Kong, where people are used to commuting using public transportation system, Malaysia is moving towards that direction too,” he told TheEdgeProperty.com.
This is evident from the sales of the company’s Sentral Suites serviced apartment project, which is located across the road from the country’s first TOD, KL Sentral, developed by MRCB. Soft-launched in January, it has seen an encouraging booking rate of over 700 units out of the 976 units offered in phase one (Tower 1 and 3).
Of that, a total of RM500 million has been confirmed with buyers having signed sales and purchase agreements, said MRCB vice-president of commercial and office leasing Wong Hong Yeong.
With the encouraging sales, MRCB is looking at launching the final tower – Tower 2 – by the third quarter this year.
Situated on the 4.92-acre leasehold plot on Jalan Tun Sambathan, Kuala Lumpur, Sentral Suites comprises retail units and three 43-storey towers housing 1,434 units of apartments with built-ups ranging between 650 sq ft and 1,166 sq ft.
The selling price for Tower 1 and Tower 3 units averaged RM1,200 psf but the developer declined to reveal the indicative selling price for Tower 2.
Wong said the integrated development has a combined gross development value (GDV) of RM1.52 billion and is slated to be completed by 2021.
Sentral Suites targets young professionals who want to stay outside the city centre but prefer the convenience offered by a TOD, while the previous MRCB projects, Suasana Loft and Sentral Residences in KL Sentral, target the mid-upper-income group.
On a daily basis, KL Sentral records a footfall of 200,000, consisting of commuters, shoppers and a fixed working population in KL Sentral of about 60,000 to 70,000 people.
“In terms of rental, I can say it’s doing pretty well. For offices in KL Sentral, the rental ranges from RM5 psf to RM7 psf; some Grade A and Green Building Index rated buildings could fetch a rental of about RM8 psf to RM9 psf,” he noted.
For residential properties, he added that the average rent ranges between RM4 psf and RM5.50 psf.
“Besides various amenities, the key attraction of KL Sentral for companies and individuals is that they could commute to various parts of the city without being caught in the traffic, with the convenience of public transportation,” Kwan highlighted.
MRCB’s other TOD projects include PJ Sentral Garden City, Penang Sentral, Kwasa Sentral and Cyberjaya City Centre. The substructure work for PJ Sentral Garden City in Section 52, Petaling Jaya is about to finish and the super structure will be up in the second or third quarter this year.
Transport hub Penang Sentral in Butterworth is expected to open by the third quarter this year. After that, MRCB will start the construction of the shopping mall, which is part of the project; that will take about two and a half years.
On the Kwasa Sentral TOD in Sungai Buloh, Selangor, MRCB plans to launch the first phase by end-2017, comprising two apartment blocks with about 500 units and one new concept retail mall.
“We haven’t finalised the details yet, but for the residential development, it will be a reasonably priced product,” he added.