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Thursday November 15, 2012

M'sian and S'porean units join to unveil RM7bil DUO project

It is to complement Marina Bay and Raffles Place business clusters

SINGAPORE: M+S Pte Ltd has unveiled the design of DUO, an integrated development with a gross development value of S$3bil (RM7.51bil) at Ophir-Rochor, the up-and-coming downtown that complements the Marina Bay and Raffles Place business clusters.

DUO is developed by M+S, a joint investment by Khazanah Nasional and Temasek Holdings, with Capitaland Ltd and UEM Land Holdings appointed as project managers.

The development is designed by internationally acclaimed architect, Ole Scheeren.

Preparatory work on the project has already started and is due for completion in 2017.

DUO will consist of two towers, one housing component comprising 660 premium residences.

The other offerings include prime Grade A office space designed to meet a Green Mark Platinum rating, a 300-room five-star hotel and unique retail gallery, all set within a park-like environment.

The name DUO reflects the two towers at the heart of the development and the architect's vision to create a design that relates to the contemporary aspect of the neighbouring central business district (CBD) and the historical surroundings of Kampong Glam.

In his address at the launch, M+S chairman Tan Sri Azman Yahya said: “We are committed to delivering a development that strikes a sensitive balance between the preservation of this significantly historical and vibrant area, while at the same time enhancing it with mixed-use facilities that are relevant to the future needs of Singapore.

“Striking a balance is challenging but we are confident of meeting the task with our team of local and international consultants together with our design architect, Ole Scheeren.”

“We are confident that it will attract both local and foreign residential buyers looking for sound investment, and businesses seeking Grade A commercial space with excellent facilities and connectivity at competitive pricing,” he added.

With a gross floor area of about 1.8 million sq ft, DUO will be directly connected to the Bugis MRT interchange's East West Line and upcoming Downtown Line via unerground pedestrian linkways, providing easy access to the CBD, Marina Bay and major shopping, dining and entertainment areas at Orchard Road and Singapore River.

The construction loan for the project will be financed by eight banks DBS, OCBC, UOB, Maybank, ANZ, Sumitomo Mitsui, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi and CIMB.

Speaking to reporters later, Azman said: “We do expect strong demand for the project, which is expected to be launched next year.”

In terms of pricing for the residential and office units, he said it would be announced prior to the launch.

On the hotel operators, Azman said: “We are talking to several operators and details on the matter will be announced sometime next year.”

Introducing the design concept, Schreen said the development incorporated environmental strategies through passive and active energy-design and naturally ventilated spaces.

The development has already been recognised internationally, bagging the Silver award in “Best Futura Project” category at the recent MIPIM Asia Awards 2012, an acknowledgement that celebrates excellence and innovation in real estate development. - Bernama

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