Evergro to develop iconic mixed project in Jiangyin

Evergro to develop iconic mixed project in Jiangyin


S’pore firm to build housing, office and retail units, including 55-storey tower


SINGAPORE’S Evergro Properties is building an iconic 55-storey tower, which will be the highest residential building in China’s Jiangsu province.


This high-rise block is part of an 83,000 sq m mixed development called Stamford City of Jiangyin, featuring 1,200 homes, a block of small-office, home-office units, as well as a mall.


Two weeks ago, Evergro – a Keppel Land subsidiary formerly known as Dragon Land – launched the first two blocks of the project comprising 150 high-rise, high-end apartments at 7,000 yuan (S$1,390) per sq m.


The price easily makes it one of the most expensive residential projects in town.


Evergro has not disclosed the overall cost of the project.


Buyers are expected to be mostly entrepreneurs, businessmen or senior management from Jiangyin, a city of just 1.198 million people about 160km north-west of Shanghai.


‘Jiangyin is one of the cities where the people are much richer and receptive to new ideas and design concepts,’ Ms Chan Shui Har, Evergro’s deputy chief executive officer, told The Straits Times.


She added that Stamford City had blocks of different heights, unlike other developments in the city, and these were surrounded by green lungs.


Although Jiangyin is relatively small, the local government has worked hard at developing it in the past decade.


New housing developments replaced farmlands and small generic-looking blocks of houses, while lots of greenery were introduced in the city centre.


The local government has also carved out a prime civic and cultural precinct called Cheng Shi Ke Ting (which means city living room) for development into an area to showcase the city’s best projects.


This 2.6 sq km area is already home to Jiangyin’s Grand Theatre, main library, museum and courthouse.


Stamford City is right in the centre of this area and will boast a 2km pedestrian walkway.


Evergro owns 44.7 per cent of the project, Keppel Land 39 per cent, with the rest owned by a local Chinese partner.


Jiangyin’s party secretary, Mr Zhu Min Yang, told The Straits Times that the Stamford City project will be a model for his city, and he is eager to have it completed as soon as possible.


He revealed that the city has plans to develop another area into a 5.6 sq km garden precinct with a lake, greenery, a five-star hotel, hospital, schools and homes.


‘There will be opportunities to work with Singapore firms,’ he said in Mandarin.


But the city will start another high-rise living area only after Evergro’s project is completed.


Mr Zhu, who visited Singapore four times last year, said the city has invited Evergro to be its ‘teacher’.


‘We want to learn from Singapore,’ he said. ‘We want to improve the lives of Jiangyin residents.’


At the Stamford City sales office, buyers of the high-end project were treated to refreshments. And they were served by well-groomed agents, who were dressed in a uniform of skirt suits – a requirement laid down by Evergro that is new to the city.


Not only is the buying experience new, the property concept is also unusual. ‘We are selling a lifestyle that is new to them,’ said Ms Chan.


For Evergro, the effort it made to establish good relations with the local government in order to get this site appears to be bearing fruit.


It has made plans for a rights issue to raise funds for more land purchases in Jiangsu province, including places such as Jiangyin and Changzhou, where property prices have largely held firm.


Its other property in Jiangyin – the city’s only golf course – is attracting the crowds as the sport catches on.


Meanwhile, Evergro is also selling its 566-unit residential project in Changzhou, a half-hour car ride from Jiangyin.


Source: Straits Times

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