Owners of High Street Centre make second collective sale attempt at $748 mil

The collective sales committee (CSC) of High Street Centre has decided to relaunch the building at 1 North Bridge Road for collective sale. 80% of the strata-titled owners have given their approval. Cushman & Wakefield has been retained as the marketing agency and Legal Solutions LLC as the legal adviser.On Oct 26, Cushman & Wakefield will launch the tender for the sale of the building, which has a 99-year lease from 1969, and a remaining lease of 45 years.

High Street Centre is a landmark that sits on a 60,298 sq ft of land with a gross plot ratio of 7.72, giving a total gross floor area of 466,085 sq ft. It has a distinguished frontage along Hill Street, North Boat Quay and North Bridge Road, as well as a waterfront promenade that extends over 100m.

Johnny Ong, chairman of the CSC of High Street Centre, states, “In the past, the 30th floor used to be an observatory which afforded tourists a 360-degree panoramic view of the city. We have since, converted the space into our management office and for other uses.”

The 29-storey building is mixed-used with 429 strata titles, with one strata title for the carpark. 190 strata-titled retail units find their home in the retail podium spanning basement 1 to level 3, while the carpark on levels four and five holds one strata title. The remaining 183 strata-titled office units are on levels six to 24, with 55 apartments from levels 25 to 29.

Many of the unit holders have been in the building for years. Chairman Ong has been here for more than 30 years, running his electronics trading business – Telesonic Singapore – from his offices on the 22nd floor. He has also been an active council member in the management corporation strata title board for over 20 years.

Harry Gurnani, a member of the CSC, and the director of Lucky Store, which holds two prime corner units on the first level of the retail podium, has had his family-owned business here since the late 1980s.

High Street Centre is in a prime location, and with its proximity to The Capitol, The Funan, Raffles City, Clarke Quay, Boat Quay and the upcoming CanningHill Piers, makes it a desirable asset. It also overlooks the Padang, which has been placed on Singapore’s tentative list of Unesco World Heritage Sites.

Given its commercial zoning, the GFA must be allocated to commercial use, such as office and retail (including F&B). Alternatively, 40% can be for either hotel use with a maximum of 450 keys, or residential or serviced apartments.

The public art program is expected to begin in the Woodlands Condo area in 2021 and continue for the next five years. It will feature works of art such as sculptures, murals, and installations throughout the district. The program will be funded by the Condominium Development Authority (CDA) and other public and private sources. The public art program is part of an effort to create a vibrant and attractive living environment in the Woodlands Condo area. Residents and visitors can expect to enjoy the public art pieces, which will provide an interesting and engaging visual experience.

With a reserve price of $748 million, and depending on the proposed use of the site, the land rate is either $2,164 psf ppr if 40% is allocated for residential, or $2,290 psf ppr if 40% is allocated for hotel use.

Cushman & Wakefield’s Christina Sim describes the property as “an iconic trophy asset” with its view of the Formula One Night Race, the skyline of Raffles Place, Marina Bay and the East.

The tender closes on Jan 25, 2024. High Street Centre is an opportune time for property investors to invest in a prime location.

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