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Luxurious satellite city picks up pace

The entrance to Camko City.
The entrance to Camko City. Hong Menea

Luxurious satellite city picks up pace

Following a lull in development, Camko City will see a hefty cash injection
The developer behind the much-delayed Camko City project in Phnom Penh will inject $300 million into the satellite city’s second phase, after development stalled following the financial crisis.

KC Whang, vice president of South Korea-backed developer World City, said the second phase would include 134 luxury villas, a three-hectare mall, office space and a hospital.

A high-rise at Camko City.
A high-rise at Camko City. Hong Menea

“This project is just beginning and slated for completion in 2016,” he said.

“Having this much investment capital is in line with the rapid growth of Cambodia’s property sector, with success expected because we are committed to developing for the long term and providing a modern lifestyle for Cambodians.”

The construction of the mall, office space and hospital, will begin soon, with the design stage nearly done, Whang said.

The villas, priced between $600,000 and $1.4 million, are aimed at the very top of Cambodia’s property market.

They will feature Italian electrical appliances, wallpaper from Belgium, bathroom furnishings from America and other imported amenities.

Construction on Camko City has been sporadic.

The satellite city on the northern edge of Tuol Kork began its first phase in 2007, a combination of villas, flats, condos and shophouses. But once 441 condos were built, delays began in 2010, with construction resuming in mid-2012.

According to In Sitha, vice president of World Trust Estate, Camko was Phnom Penh’s first satellite city, but it ran into problems after the 2008 financial crisis prompted the collapse of its South Korean banking partner, Busan Savings Bank.

More luxurious villas are expected to rise at Camko City
More luxurious villas are expected to rise at Camko City. PHOTO SUPPLIED

He said he was not surprised Camko was starting up again, considering the affluence of the area where it is located.

Tuol Kork has become known as the haunt for wealthy Cambodians to build spacious villas, and residential land usually goes for $1,600 to $2,000 per square metre.

“A lot of development projects have sprung up around Camko City, and it has better infrastructure,” Sitha said.

“This satellite city is becoming an active commercial hub due to hospitals, international school, malls and land for different types of development.”

The mall in Camko City would also be successful due to the district’s wealthy customer base, Sitha said.

At the moment, the only Western-style mall in Tuol Kork is TK Avenue, an outdoor mall which opened last year.

TK Avenue’s occupancy rate is at 95 per cent, with retail space going at $22 to $24 per square metre, according to real estate firm CBRE.

Sung Bonna, director of Bonna Realty Group, agreed that Camko City’s planned expansion could be a hit, as the area is sandwiched between high-profile development projects such as Angkor Phnom Penh and New World Borey.

“The villa and mall developments should be automatically successful because the area really needs a mall, which will build customers’ confidence again,” he said.

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