GuocoLand Limited (“GuocoLand”) on Nov 25 announced the groundbreaking of Guoco Midtown, unveiling the name of the prime site that is set to rejuvenate the Beach Road district. It will provide a new epicentre for this side of Singapore’s Central Business District (CBD).
Guoco Midtown is expected to be completed by the first half of 2022. Nestled within the City Hall office micromarket, Guoco Midtown will be the final critical piece of jigsaw that completes the transformation of the area.
The development has a total gross floor area of approximately 950,500 square feet (“sq ft”). It comprises 770,000 sq ft of premium Grade A office space; 30,000 sq ft of retail and entertainment; more than 200 units at its exclusive residences; and the former Beach Road Police Station, a conserved building.
The Beach Road Police Station was built by the colonial government in the early 1930s. Part of the expansion plans of the local police force during that period, the station was one of many built in the city area and it had remained operational until 2001. The colonial-style building was accorded conservation status in 2002, and marked as a historic site in 2003.
In 2003, the former Beach Road Police Station building became the fourth location to be marked as a historic site by the National Heritage Board. From 2003 to 2006, the Singapore government announced plans to lease out about 13 disused state properties to private schools, including the former Beach Road Police Station building. The building was subsequently repainted a bright orange, and housed the Raffles Design Institute from 2007 to 2013.20 It was also the venue for SingaPlural, the main event for Singapore Design Week, in 2015 and 2016.
The plot of land along Beach Road was sold in Sep 2017 for $1.62 billion to a consortium comprising subsidiaries of property developer Guocoland. The winning bid translated to about S$1,706 per square foot per plot ratio. The two-hectare site will have a maximum permissible gross floor area of 950,592 sq ft.
The integrated development will be served by four MRT lines (the East-West, Downtown, North-South and Circle lines). It will also connect the three major office micromarkets of City Hall, Marina Centre and Bugis. There will be a direct underground link to the Bugis MRT interchange station and above ground links to surrounding developments. It will also have fantastic unblocked views of Marina Bay, Kallang Basin, Orchard Road and the sea. It is served by major arterial roads in the city centre and the Nicoll Highway, as well as the North-South Highway in future.
Mr Raymond Choong, Group President & CEO of GuocoLand said, “We have a strong track record of building successful and transformative mixed developments. Our Guoco Tower has uplifted the image of the Tanjong Pagar District; it is now perceived as a prime office location and leisure destination in the Central Business District. In the same way, Guoco Midtown will redefine the Beach Road area by introducing trend-setting concepts for office, retail and residential. It will also have some unique public spaces which will attract many people to Guoco Midtown.”
In many capital cities around the world, the midtown area is the part of the city centre that is vibrant with a high concentration of shopping, culture and entertainment amenities, and also prime corporate offices. The Beach Road area is one such district. An overseas example is Midtown Manhattan, New York, where the iconic Times Square, Fifth Avenue and Broadway are located. Many of the largest corporations have their global headquarters at Midtown Manhattan.
Said Mr Cheng Hsing Yao, Group Managing Director of GuocoLand Singapore: “Forward-looking companies wanting to attract more creative talents often move to midtown type locations because such talents prefer to work in more vibrant and fun districts. Guoco Midtown is a future-ready and ‘best-in-class’ development that will support the new way of working and living, and will elevate the positioning of the district.”
At Guoco Midtown, the office design will cater to companies in the new economy that want a dynamic and collaborative working environment. The residential project will target people who want a more engaging living environment. The retail and F&B spaces will offer F&B operators looking for a different environment to develop novel concepts. The entire development will be set in many lively and green public spaces, which will engage the community with year-round festivals and events. GuocoLand will unveil the full concept and design of Guoco Midtown in the first half of 2019.
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