Vol. XXII, No. 146 [ BusinessWorld Online ]
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 | MANILA, PHILIPPINES
BY KRISTINE JANE R. LIU, Reporter
EMERGING BUSINESS district Bonifacio Global City in Taguig remains a sought-after location for both office and residential spaces, even as rival business districts continue to feel the effects of the slowing global economy.
Noel Eli B. Kintanar, Commercial Operations head of Fort Bonifacio Development Corp. (FBDC), told a briefing yesterday they continue to enjoy high lease rates, with land values appreciating by more than a quarter to P140,000 to P150,000 per square meter last year.
"The market remains good and [property appreciation] indicates that the market has given a premium to Fort Bonifacio. Property developers’ appetite for leasing the lands in Fort Bonifacio is still growing," Mr. Kintanar said. He added that despite the crisis, the company gets a lot of inquiries from interested developers.
While residential projects make up a big chunk of the 240-hectare Bonifacio Global City, FBDC expects the office sector to grow dramatically in the coming years.
Mr. Kintanar said the area has become a favored destination next to Makati City and Ortigas Center, and he expects the takeup of office spaces in Taguig City to grow by almost fourfold to half-a-million square meters in gross floor area over the next five years. A number of offices, corporate headquarters and institutional facilities have located in Bonifacio Global City because it is near the airport and the Makati and Ortigas business districts.
Among the establishments that have expanded there are global financial service firm JP Morgan Chase, Deutsche Bank, Globe Headquarters and the Chancery for Singapore Embassy. Mr. Kintanar noted that as of end-2008, 72 projects have been completed, 41 were ongoing while 23 residential, office and retail development projects had been proposed.
This year, FBDC, the main developer of Bonifacio Global City, has embarked on two major projects — a science museum and another business process outsourcing building.
The P1-billion Mind Museum is a partnership with the National Geographic, and is expected to become the country’s first state-of-the-art interactive science museum. The project is expected to break ground in October and is expected to be opened to the public two years from now.
The museum, which will have 175 interactive exhibits and displays, can accommodate more than 300,000 visitors yearly.
FBDC will also start building the P300-million, 29-storey Bonifacio E-Services Building, which will cater to business process outsourcing companies.
It is alloting P4-P5 billion to develop City Center North as part of Bonifacio Global City’s re-masterplanning, where 16 lots will be sold for mixed-use development.