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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Posco aiming to finish $300m project by 2013

Posco aiming to finish $300m project by 2013

091110_07
Star River Project Manager Hee-Seob Shin oversees construction Monday at Posco’s construction site in Chamkarmon district’s Tonle Bassac commune.

South Korean firm to start selling units after Khmer New Year.

In this project many Korean people have also shown an interest.

SOUTH Korean builder Posco E&C said Monday it will begin selling units in its three-tower Star River apartment complex development following Khmer New Year in advance of a planned completion date of October 2013.

The US$300 million, 237,500-square-metre riverfront complex, located in Chamkarmon district’s Tonle Bassac commune, will consist of 1,000 apartments in three apartment blocks – one 45 storeys tall and the other two 42 storeys each, Project Manager Hee-Seob Shin said Monday.

Posco Marketing Manager Jang Jung Hee said the development would target the wealthiest 1 percent of Cambodians but added that Koreans had already shown a lot of interest in the project.

“Our research shows that more than 90 percent of apartments and condos sold in Cambodia are bought by Cambodian people, but in this project many Korean people have also shown an interest,” he said. “Many Koreans like Posco projects. Whenever we have a project, many Koreans follow.”

Hee said some prospective Korean buyers were already living in Cambodia, and that many more were looking to buy units as rental properties. He estimated the likely return at more than 10 percent a year.

As well as the apartments, which will have between one and seven bedrooms, the towers will include two floors for retail and commercial activities, another floor for public facilities, including a fitness centre and swimming pool, and seven floors of car parking capable of holding 1,300 cars.

Posco’s Economic Institute was still pricing the Cambodian market, but Hee said it was likely to be priced below other similar condominium developments in the city, such as Gold Tower 42 and De Castle.

“Gold Tower will also have very high-quality condos, but we think it will be more suitable for prospective buyers if we can be 10 to 20 percent cheaper,” Hee said.

The company was due to hold a safety ceremony today featuring Cambodian monks and Korean prayers. Shin said the event was in place of a groundbreaking ceremony and would ensure the project was aligned with the local culture.

Construction began in early October following a feasibility study and extensive soil testing that began in May last year.

A spokesperson for South Korea’s Daesan Cambodia, which is working with Posco on the development, told the Post last September that an end-2008 start date for the project was shelved in the fallout of a botched attempt by the government to introduce rules regulating the financing of housing and condominium developments.

The controversial prakas, or edict, which was due to take effect at the end of September 2008, was delayed amid an outcry by South Korean developers, who said the proposal was unworkable and would make investment in the country impossible.

Shin referred questions regarding the issue to Daesan Monday, which was unavailable, but denied any delays to the project.

He said the time was spent localising designs and preparing the site, which he said would require extensive piling to ensure sturdy foundations, given the loose soil substrate on the riverfront.

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