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Monday, October 4, 2010

Penang Turf Club in land sale bid

Talk is that major developers like Eastern & Oriental, SP Setia, IJM Land and Mah Sing would have put in their bids to buy and develop the land

The Penang Turf Club, owner of the single largest plot of prime land in George Town, has called for bids to buy and develop 23.09ha on the island, sources say.

The tender, called two months ago, closed on September 30 and speculation is that major developers already present in Penang, like Eastern & Oriental Bhd (3417), SP Setia Bhd, IJM Land Bhd and Mah Sing Group Bhd, would have put in their proposals.

The club has been around since 1864, making it the oldest horse racing club in Peninsular Malaysia, and owns some 104ha.

However, it is unclear if the remaining land is available for sale or slated for development.
Property valuers say the price for that 23ha site could amount to between RM160 million and RM180 million.

It is understood that some 16ha are on a hill.

A valuer contacted by Business Times, who had said that the piece of hillside land in Penang could not be developed, quoted the price at between RM30 per sq ft and RM40 per sq ft.

The land below the hill has more value at about RM150 per sq ft.

Sources said that the racecourse was not part of the sale and development plans. The Penang Turf Club could not be reached for comment.

Plans for the club's redevelopment came to an end in 2008 when Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng rejected a proposal from Equine Capital Bhd associate company Abad Naluri Sdn Bhd due to its failure to submit plans as required by the state.

The land was slated for the RM25 billion Penang Global City Centre project.

Later reports quoted the club's plans to build 25 bungalows to obtain rental income to fund operations.

Members had voted for the project comprising detached and semi-detached houses, and slated for completion by end-2012.

The maximum density allowed for the area is six units per 0.45ha and the development will not interfere with the running of the club.

By Business Times

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