The closing date for technology hub Sim Lim Square’s en bloc tender has been extended by a month.
This has been done to let potential bidders explore the idea of developing the site into a hotel and not have to stick around with retail stores or office blocks. As per URA’s Draft Master Plan of 2019, the 7,260 sq m site has been zoned commercial.
The development about the extension of tender date was informed by SLP International, the marketing agent for the collective sale.
The tender which was scheduled to expire on Monday (June 24) shall now close on July 22 at 3:00 PM.
Project lead at SLP International, Mr Francis Tan said that many of the interested bidders who have contacted them over the last few weeks have requested for more time.
This they say will allow them to explore the potential of converting the site into a mixed-development space or a hotel.
Interestingly this news comes at a time when many developments in Rochor Canal Road where this tech hub is located have been categorised for hotel use under the Draft Master Plan of 2019.
According to Mr Tan, converting the site into a hotel would require developers to approach multiple parties outlining their plans with the development.
It must be noted here that it can take anywhere up to 20 days for developers to get their applications processed where URA considers the impact of the development in the surrounding vicinity before issuing the approval.
Market analysts pointed out that the effort put in towards converting the site into a hotel should be completely worthy as a mixed-use development in this vicinity would be more of a strategic investment than a purely commercial one.
CBRE’s Head of Research, Mr Desmond Sim mentioned that given the zoning, developers have the option of opting for either retail or offices.
Sim Lim Square’s location isn’t conducive for office space as the area is not the traditional office market. And opting for retail might make it difficult for the developers to achieve higher levels of occupancy.
He added that mixed-use development such as a hotel would be the best option to utilize the space.
According to Mr Sim hotels aren’t restricted to retail hours or office hours and hotel by their nature add retail component.
He finished by saying that the space would be best utilized on a 24/7 basis by developing it into a hotel as compared to other commercial developments.