Property values around Jurong Lake Distict and Gerbang Nusajaya are expected to rise thanks to the iconic High Speed Rail (HSR) project.
By Khalil Adis
Jurong East in Singapore and Gerbang Nusajaya are set to enjoy further growth as they become new regional centres thanks to the iconic High Speed Rail (HSR) between Singapore and Malaysia although there will be a delay by two years to 2022 for that to fully materialise.
First announced in 2010, the project is the first of its kind in the region which will cut travel time from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur to a mere 90 minutes.
This is expected to spur cross-border investments on both sides of the causeway and enhance property values at the eight HSR stops spanning from Sungei Besi in Kuala Lumpur all the way to Jurong East in Singapore.
At the recent Leaders’ Retreat in Singapore, Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong revealed that Jurong East has been chosen as the site for the Singapore terminus which will tie in with the government’s overall plans to transform the area into the country’s second Central Business District (CBD).
Noting that the project has received great attention both domestically and internationally, Lee and Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Abdul Razak said the HSR project will be a game-changer.
“Both Leaders were encouraged by the support and attention from the global community and looked forward to further progress on this game-changing iconic project which will boost connectivity, facilitate travel between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, enhance business linkages and improve people-to-people ties,” read a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
Singapore’s new gem in the making
Back in 2008, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) had announced the Draft Master Plan for Jurong Lake District which comprised a new CBD and commercial hub along with retail malls and hotels.
The area is fast taking shape as a decentralised CBD with almost 500,000 sq m of office space plus 200,000 sq m of retail, F&B and entertainment space called Jurong Gateway with plans for 2,800 hotel rooms.
Once a sleepy neighbourhood blessed with a lake, Jurong East is now buzzing with life and currently home to a Grade ‘A’ office tower. Called Westgate, this is where CapitaLand, one of Asia’s largest real estate companies, now calls home. Meanwhile, Genting Hotel became the first hotel to make its mark in the district in April 2015.
This growth is set to receive a further boost from tourists and business travellers from Malaysia once the HSR project is completed as it will enhance the area’s desirability.
A property values booster
With the announcement of the HSR station within the area, property values are set to rise even more especially in the current bearish market.
If we follow historical trends in Singapore, properties which are located within close proximity of transportation hubs such as MRT stations tend to appreciate between 5 to 10 per cent over a long period of time.
Further boosting the property market in the vicinity is the demand to live in and around Jurong Lake District, thus leading to higher asking prices.
Homes near the terminus such as those in the neighbourhoods of Jurong East, Lakeside and Taman Jurong are already reporting a 1 per cent increase in asking prices despite the weakening market which is the result of the various cooling measures in place.
These neighbourhoods are 5 minutes away from Jurong Country Club which has been identified as the site for the terminus location
A matching CBD in Nusajaya
While the station in Nusajaya has not yet been announced, government officials have indicated that it will be located close to Motorsports City near East Ledang.
In April 2015, Nusajaya’s master developer UEM Sunrise Berhad further revealed its comprehensive development plans for Gerbang Nusajaya which will have its own CBD similar to Jurong Lake District.
“Gerbang Nusajaya is the gateway to Iskandar Malaysia and will serve as the commercial and business engine for Nusajaya,” said the company in a statement.
Spread across 4,551 acres of land, this second phase of Nusajaya’s development will be designed with catalytic industries similar to the various economic drivers in Nusajaya and Medini.
Both these areas are home to tourism, logistics, finance, information communication technology and creative industry establishments just to name a few.
In anticipation for the HSR terminus in Gerbang Nusajaya, a number of catalytic developments have been planned.
They include Nusajaya Tech Park, a 519-acre integrated eco-friendly tech park and FASTrack Iskandar which is a 300-acre ‘motorsports city’.
This is the closest hint we can get on the possibility of the Nusajaya HSR station being located here.
With a gross development value of RM42 billion, property values for existing homes in Nusajaya and Medini will enjoy a boost from the economic spillover.
As it stands, condominium prices here range from RM800 to RM1,000 per sq ft.
In the near future, it could possibly increase by 5 to 10 per cent as the area will be developed over a period of 25 years.
An estimated 76,000 direct job offerings and 137,000 indirect job offerings are expected to be created as a result.
UEM anticipates Gerbang Nusajaya to have an estimated 220,000 population upon its completion, tying it nicely with its site for Nusajaya’s HSR terminus.
This article was first published by iProperty.com in its June 2015 issue.