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Saturday, October 16, 2010

Mixed reaction to PNB's tower plan

Pemodalan Nasional Bhd plans to build a 100-storey tower which is due to be completed in 2015; the Petronas Twin Towers is 88-storey high.

Pemodalan Nasional Bhd's plan to build Malaysia's tallest tower on a 7.2ha area in the vicinity of Stadium Merdeka and Stadium Negara was met with mixed reaction from property experts.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak yesterday announced in his budget speech of PNB's plans to spend RM5 billion on an integrated development by 2020.

The development includes a 100-storey tower which is due to be completed in 2015. The Petronas Twin Towers is 88-storey high.

One property consultant, who declined to be named, said the developer of the tower will have to be very resourceful in order to secure tenants for the space. It is understood that the tower alone will have 3.5 million square feet of space.

He also said that the RM5 billion price tag justified the amount of infrastructure work that would have to go into the development of the area, which includes roads and tunnels.

Zerin Properties chief executive officer Previndran Singhe, as a proponent of iconic structures, is all for the project.

"I've always maintained that an iconic structure doesn't have to be a tall one, but we need iconic structures to give the country a sense of identity.

"Just like how when you think Paris, you think Eiffel Tower," he said.

Previndran said with the government's various initiatives like Kuala Lumpur International Financial District and announcement of three brokerage licences, there was a high probability that there would be a need for the space come 2015.

"Also, we don't know what the composition would be like. It could be 80 per cent office space and 20 per cent hotel space, it's all subject to demand and supply," he said.

A 100-storey building on average would cost 50 per cent more per square foot than a normal high-rise building, depending on the actual design.

By Business Times

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