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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Penang raises density for property development

GEORGE TOWN: The state government has raised the density for property development in Penang, which will bring down land cost and stabilise property prices, said Hunza Properties Bhd executive chairman Datuk Khor Teng Tong.

Datuk Khor Teng Tong says it will help arrest the escalation of property prices.

“The state government recently decided to increase the density to 280,000 sq ft in built-up area from 90,000 sq ft per 100,000 sq ft of land.The decision to increase density will allow developers to build more, hence giving consumers more choices.

“It will also help arrest the escalation of property prices over the next few years,” he said at a company briefing for the media, analysts and bankers.

On the group’s projects on the island, Khor said Hunza would finalise the design plans for a “green” apartment building project on a 4ha site soon.

The apartments would have built-up areas ranging between 1,300 and 1,800 sq ft

The project was expected to contribute strongly to the bottom line of the group for the financial years ending 2011 and 2012, Khor said.

On the Gurney Paragon project, Khor said the designs and plans for the shopping mall had been finalised and submitted to the relevant authorities for approval.

“We hope to start work by early 2010,” he said.

The seven-storey shopping mall will have a gross built-up area of 1 million sq ft, of which 650,000 to 700,000 sq ft would be lettable.

On the property market in Penang, Khor said property was currently in short supply.

“The shortage of supply is mainly due to a slowdown by developers. Not many new housing projects have started in the past one year.

“Furthermore, work on projects in the state has to stop at 6pm, which will delay the delivery of units, resulting in lower supply and the increase of property prices,” he said, adding that the local authorities needed to speed up approvals for new housing projects to meet market demand.

For the fiscal year ended June 30 (FY09), the group posted RM27.6mil net profit on revenue of RM91.8mil compared with RM48.4mil and RM245mil respectively in FY08.

By The Star

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