BY NG BEI SHAN
File picture shows the Pudu Jail site. Ahmad declined to name the bidders. The site has received tremendous attention not only due to its strategic location, but also the sentiments of the historical site.
PETALING JAYA: Five “big” developers, including one from Singapore, will submit their proposals for the redevelopment of the former Pudu Jail site to UDA Holdings Bhd next Friday.
UDA Holdings group managing director Ahmad Abu Bakar said the bidders were earlier given two months to come up with proposals to develop the project known as Bukit Bintang City Centre (BBCC), with a gross development value (GDV) of between RM6bil and RM6.5bil.
He was speaking to reporters after signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Bank Muamalat to develop waqf land in Malaysia. Waqf is an inherent religious endowment, in the form of assets, dedicated by a Muslim to benefit others.
To recap, the company held a concept briefing on Sept 23, after calling for a request for proposal to develop the BBCC. It was reported that 24 developers had attended the briefing.
Ahmad declined to name the bidders. The site has received tremendous attention not only due to its strategic location but also the sentiments of the historical site.
In a previous interview with StarBiz, newly-appointed chairman Datuk Johari Abdul Ghani said it would collaborate with one or more parties to develop the site.
He added that UDA Holdings already had a concept but would welcome input from its partners to develop the 7.85ha site which consists of seven blocks of buildings for commercial and residential, office towers, a hotel and a shopping complex.
Before this round of tender, China’s Everbright Construction Ltd was recommended to be its project partner, which was rejected by the Finance Ministry. Johari said any party with relevant expertise, track record and background, including bumiputra developers, could put in their bids. The project is part of the Economic Transformation Programme.
Notably, another multi-billion project within the vicinity is the 118-storey Warisan Merdeka undertaken by Perbadanan Nasional Bhd.
Analysts cautioned the possibility of an oversupply in commercial spaces if the developments were not well-coordinated.
On the development of waqf land, Ahmad said the company would join hands withBank Muamalat to develop 40.47ha with a GDV in the excess of RM1bil across the nation.
It will start off by developing a 2ha mixed development with a GDV of RM125mil in Selangor under the MoU and was in talks to develop waqf land in Kelantan, Sabah, Kedah, Perak and Penang.
According to Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Ahmad Maslan who witnessed the signing ceremony, there are 11,091.82 ha of waqf land worth RM1.177bil in the country.
The development of waqf land in Malaysia is under the jurisdiction of the National Endowment Foundation and the Department of Awqaf, Zakat and Haji.