A six-storey commercial building with shops, restaurants and a cineplex may sit on the site where the iconic Queenstown cinema and bowling centre used to be, at 250 Commonwealth Avenue.
The prime commercial development site was launched for sale by tender yesterday. Located at the corner of Commonwealth Avenue and Margaret Drive, the vacant plot is about 300m from Queenstown MRT station and has a land area of 32,305 sq ft.
Written permission has been granted for it to be developed into a six-storey commercial building with basement carpark spaces.
The approved gross floor area (GFA) is 96,914 sq ft. No development charge is payable.
Marketing agent Cushman & Wakefield said the property is expected to fetch above $200 million, or about $2,063 per sq ft of the approved GFA. The plot has a 99-year lease that commenced on Jan 1, 1975.
Cushman & Wakefield executive director of capital markets Shaun Poh said: "This is a rare opportunity to acquire a prime commercial development site right in the heart of Queenstown, a mature and highly popular residential precinct. In fact, it is the only commercial site available on the market within the locale."
He added that recent cooling measures in the residential segment mean that both retail investors and developers are more likely to invest in commercial properties, which are exempt from additional buyer's stamp duty and seller's stamp duty.
He also noted that the new commercial development will serve more than 17,000 households from new and existing residences in the vicinity, citing new public housing projects as well as condominium developments in the area.
ZACD Group executive director Nicholas Mak said the growing population and high-density residential developments nearby are plus points. But he added: "If it is going to be a mall, it must be well designed and well managed. For example, it would require a major anchor tenant such as a supermarket that will attract shoppers, as well as concerted promotion efforts, for the mall to be sustainable."
In its heyday in the 1970s and 1980s, the 1,715-seat Queenstown cinema was a favourite among residents in Queenstown and students from nearby secondary schools. It was built in 1977 and closed in 1999.
In 2013, hoardings were put up around the building, and it was later torn down.
The tender for the site will close at 3pm on Jan 8 next year.