Posted on 09:24 PM, June 15, 2010 [ BusinessWorld Online]
BY MARITES S. VILLAMOR, Visayas Bureau Chief
CEBU CITY -- Avida Land, Inc. is spending P5 billion this year on various projects in Western Visayas, including a new residential condominium in Cebu and subdivisions in Iloilo and Bacolod.
Avida, the wholly owned subsidiary of Ayala Land, Inc. for “affordable” property development projects, yesterday launched Avida Towers Cebu at Asiatown IT Park, highlighting Ayala Land’s more aggressive foray into the Visayas and Mindanao areas.
Antonino T. Aquino, Ayala Land president, said his firm also wants to build malls, hotels, business process outsourcing (BPO) buildings, and residential developments. Ayala Land last week launched the Ayala TechnoHub in Iloilo.
The launching of Avida Towers Cebu brings Asiatown IT Park, a 29-hectare industrial park developed by Ayala-led Cebu Property Ventures and Development Corp., closer to becoming a “fully integrated community” with commercial and residential components.
“The whole objective here is to make sure that we will put in one single location all facilities where people can live, work and play,” Mr. Aquino said.
Leo M. Montenegro, Avida president and chief executive officer, said Avida will also launch a residential subdivision project at Pavia town in Iloilo next month and another residential subdivision project in Bacolod, Negros Occidental in September.
Avida is also looking for properties outside Cebu City that may be developed into residential subdivisions.
“We’re looking for areas where we can expand and undertake subdivision projects. But that will be outside the city already because properties within the city are expensive,” Mr. Montenegro said.
Mr. Montenegro said the take-up rates in all Avida projects, especially condominium units, have been high.
“The market is upbeat probably because the economy is recovering and more people are opting to get a condominium unit instead of a land-and-house development that is usually located far from their workplace. But even our subdivision projects are also fast-selling,” he added.
Avida launched recently residential condominium projects in Alabang and Bonifacio Global City in Metro Manila.
In Cebu, the first of two 25-storey buildings that compose Avida Towers will be completed in 2013 while the second will be completed about three years after it is launched.
The first tower, which is estimated to cost P1.4 billion, will have 518 units that fetch a minimum of P1.6 million for a studio. As of yesterday, about 30% of the units have been sold.
Avida Towers Cebu is a joint development project with Asian I-Office Properties, Inc., a special purpose vehicle created by Ayala Land and Cebu Property Ventures.
Asian I-Office recently launched eBloc 2, another mid-rise BPO building within Asiatown. The first eBloc, which was completed last year, is fully occupied.
Aside from its condominium projects, Avida is also undertaking subdivision developments in Luzon.