Maxwell House up for collective sale with reserve price of $295m

The Maxwell House site is within a few minutes' walk of the Tanjong Pagar and Chinatown MRT stations. The upcoming underground Maxwell MRT station on the Thomson-East Coast Line is expected to be completed in 2022.
Dated: 22-Sep-2020

Maxwell House, which has been around since 1971, is up for collective sale with a new mixed-use commercial and residential project or hotel possibly taking over the site.

Owners of the 13-storey building at 20 Maxwell Road have set a reserve price of $295 million, sales consultant Cushman & Wakefield said yesterday.

The block comprises mainly offices and sits on a trapezoidal island site of about 41,801 square feet (sq ft), with views from all four sides of the building.

The site has a plot ratio of 4.3 under the Urban Redevelopment Authority's (URA) Master Plan 2019.

But Cushman & Wakefield noted that the URA said in January last year that it would support a mixed-use commercial and residential development with a 30 per cent higher plot ratio of 5.6, and a gross floor area (GFA) of 234,086 sq ft.

This is subject to a rezoning. Another caveat is that the commercial part of the new project must not exceed 20 per cent of the total GFA.

The allowable building height has also been increased to 21 storeys.

Assuming 80 per cent of the total GFA is for residential use and the remaining 20 per cent for commercial, the blended land rate works out to approximately $1,691 per sq ft (psf) per plot ratio.

This is after factoring in a 7 per cent bonus balcony plot ratio and differential premium and estimated lease upgrading premium for the site.

Cushman & Wakefield said the site could be redeveloped into a hotel, with a plot ratio 5.6. This option would increase the land rate to $1,998 psf per plot ratio, also inclusive of the differential premium and estimated lease upgrading premium.

Maxwell House sits at the fringe of the Central Business District but is also near the conservation shophouse enclaves of Tanjong Pagar and Chinatown and within a few minutes' walk of Maxwell Food Centre and the Tanjong Pagar and Chinatown MRT stations.

The upcoming underground Maxwell MRT station on the Thomson-East Coast Line is expected to be completed in 2022.

Given that it is in an area comprising mainly shops, food and beverage outlets and offices, the Maxwell House site will be "one of the rare exceptional residential plots" available on the market, Cushman & Wakefield said.

Ms Christina Sim, director of capital markets at Cushman & Wakefield, said: "Maxwell House is expected to be well-received as there is a dearth of residential development land in this part of the business and heritage district."

She added that it "will be one of the best 'work-live-play' sites to be made available".

As the property is in the central area, it is not constrained by guidelines on the maximum allowable number of units calculated based on an average size of 85 square metres per unit, Ms Sim added. This means developers have the flexibility of building studios or dual-key units.

The public tender closes at 3pm on Nov 12.

Source: Straits Times