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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Plan for RM13b Danga Bay waterfront project

JOHOR BARU: Businessman Datuk Lim Kang Hoo, who recently made a privatisation bid for developer Tebrau Teguh Bhd, is planning a more than RM13 billion project at Danga Bay here.

The soon-to-be-launched project is billed as the most exclusive and unique waterfront development in Iskandar Malaysia southern economic corridor over the next five years.

It will spread over 120 hectares at the estuaries of three rivers at the Danga Bay.

The Danga Bay waterfront development is an important component in one of the flagship developments in Iskandar Malaysia.

The site of the mega development is at two small peninsulas opposite the Danga Bay. The peninsulas are almost parallel to Sungai Sku-dai, Sungai Danga and Sungai Melayu.

Five commercial epicentres have been planned for the riverine development combining the best of the east and west cultural heritage which is set to become the jewel in the economic region.

The total project cost for the five epicentres, named The Venice, The Gateway, The Rivera, The Bund and The Fisherman Wharf, are estimated at RM13.4 billion.

The 120ha project is part of the 800ha earmarked for the Danga Bay waterfront development.

The development will be handled by Iskandar Waterfront Holdings Sdn Bhd (IWH).

Lim, who is IWH chief executive officer, said the projects are conceived to inject life into the integrated waterfront development, aiming to attract both tourists and investors.

"We welcome investors to take part in the development, either through joint venture with us, or on their own but based on our masterplan.

"Our products will be totally different from what you would find in Singapore, as our purpose is not to compete with them, but to complement them by offering something which are truly unique so as to attract their interest," Lim told the Business Times at his office here recently.

From what the names suggest, one does not need to travel far to Venice and Shanghai Bund to see the tourist destinations as both will be as near as the doorstep in future.

The Venice is one of the most interesting features in the waterfront developments as it will simulate the real topography and architectural design of the Italian city, which are canals running across rows of Venetian-style buildings.

Among the features in The Venice, which will be turned into a sleepless city, are a riverside promenade, a lifestyle street mall with a waterfront alfresco and entertainment outlets, a lifestyle street mall, hotels, apartments, among others.

The Venice will incorporate several watergates to control water level and quality.

Meanwhile, The Bund will showcase a lifestyle cultural village with water alfresco and entertainment outlets, apartments, hotels, among others.

The Fisherman Wharf is the most expensive project, costing RM3.9 billion and is aimed at complementing the existing tourism products available at the Johor Straits, which are kelongs (offshore fish cages).

Phase one of the project will see the development of apartments and sky villa while phase two will have a maritime museum, a riverfront boardwalk and wharf, and a fish auction plaza, together with hotels and thematic retail shops.

The development will simulate the setting of the fishermen wharfs in Cape Town, Norway and San Francisco, but in a modern architectural setting to reflect the localised culture.

Both The Gateway and the Rivera will have apartments, retail shoplots and hotels at the waterfront.

By Business Times

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