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Stirling Road residential site triggered for tender

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Developer commits to bid at least $685.25 million for Reserved List site

In a sign that property developers are hungry for land amid improving market sentiment, a large residential site for private homes in Queenstown has been triggered for sale.

A developer has committed to bid at least $685.25 million for the 2.11-ha Stirling Road site - able to yield about 1,110 units - the Urban Redevelopment Authority said.

Unlike sites on the confirmed list that go on sale automatically, sites on the reserve list are put up for sale only after a bid acceptable to the Government is received.

The 99-year leasehold site has been on the Government Land Sales reserve list since March 2010.

As the site is one of the larger ones on offer, analysts said the bid reflected better market sentiment and developers' growing appetite for residential land.

"The triggering of this site is by a developer who felt that the private residential property market has a high chance of getting out of the woods - there is some light at the end of the tunnel," said Mr Ong Kah Seng, director of R'ST Research.

He noted that many developers are running low on land and have to demonstrate that they have longer-term corporate growth strategies.

Mr Ong Teck Hui, JLL's national director of research, agreed that upbeat sentiment and keen buying interest this year prompted the bid.

"Being a prime city fringe site, it is also likely to generate much interest and attract buyers easily," he said.

Stirling Road residential site triggered for tender

Analysts expect competitive bidding.

Mr Desmond Sim, head of South-east Asia research at CBRE, said the site has "good attributes" as it is on "higher ground" and is within walking distance of Queenstown MRT station.

He added that the parties bidding will likely form "joint ventures as $685.25 million is a big undertaking".

Based on a maximum permissible gross floor area of 954,328 sq ft, the bid translates to a price of $718 per sq ft (psf) per plot ratio.

Analysts expect bids to climb further, at between $830 psf and $950 psf.

JLL's Mr Ong expects up to 11 bids, but noted that there were unsold supply in Commonwealth Towers and Queens Peak.

The pricing will likely take a cue from Queens Peak, with an average of $1,640 psf, and Commonwealth Towers, at an average of $1,654 psf, he added.