Lendlease Reit to redevelop Grange Road open-air carpark into event space with cinema, hawker stalls

The event space is set to be operational in the second quarter of 2022. PHOTO: LENDLEASE GLOBAL COMMERCIAL REIT

SINGAPORE - An independent cinema, hawker stalls and multiple event spaces are set to take over the 48,200 sq ft Grange Road carpark, as part of major efforts to rejuvenate the Orchard Road area.

Mainboard-listed Lendlease Global Commercial Reit (LReit) announced these plans on Saturday (June 13), after winning a tender to redevelop the open-air carpark at the junction of Grange Road and Somerset Road into a multi-functional event space.

The joint tender to redevelop the carpark, which is expected to cease operating later this year, was called by the Singapore Land Authority (SLA), Singapore Tourism Board (STB) and Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) in October last year.

The event space is set to be operational in the second quarter of 2022, and aims to offer a "first-of-its-kind lifestyle experience" along Orchard Road.

LReit said it is collaborating with live entertainment company Live Nation to create a calendar of concerts, film and events to ensure that the site is active all year round. It also intends to launch an experiential food culture and history attraction, and work with independent cinema operator The Projector.

The development project is estimated to cost around $10 million and will be designed by DP Architects, the home-grown firm behind buildings such as Our Tampines Hub and Golden Mile Complex and one of the largest architectural practices around the world.

The SLA, STB and URA said in a joint statement on Saturday that the price and quality tender for the space was awarded to LReit for its "innovative lifestyle concepts and strong pipeline of programmes and events".

The use of state land such as the Grange Road carpark for ad hoc events was first mooted in 2017 along with other ideas to bring the buzz back to Singapore's premier shopping belt.

Intended as one of the first major changes to the Orchard area's physical landscape, the carpark's redevelopment is part of the Government's long-term plan to make the shopping belt more pedestrian-friendly.

LReit said that the tender win marks the beginning of its strategy to strengthen its retail and lifestyle presence in the Somerset area. PHOTO: LENDLEASE GLOBAL COMMERCIAL REIT

The government agencies said on Saturday that the new event space will strengthen the Somerset area's position as "a youthful and energetic sub-precinct" and contribute to the overall experience on Orchard Road.

LReit said that the tender win marks the beginning of its strategy to strengthen its retail and lifestyle presence in the Somerset area.

Its prime retail asset is Orchard Road mall 313 @ Somerset, which is near the carpark space. Including the Grange Road space, 313 @ Somerset's net lettable area will expand to around 330,000 sq ft.

Mr Kelvin Chow, chief executive officer of LReit, said: "The Grange Road event space tender is a great opportunity for us to play a part in Orchard Road's rejuvenation and more specifically contribute to the placemaking of the Somerset area, which is in line with the Government's initiatives."

A "well-curated" space will have complementary effects on 313 @ Somerset, which also seeks to improve its experiential and multi-channel retail offerings, he said.

The award has an initial tenancy of three years, which may be renewed for a further two tenancy terms of three years, and a final tenancy term not exceeding 364 days.

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