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Condo, office building boom in Ratchada-Rama IX-Asoke

Oct 16. 2014
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By Somluck Srimalee
The Nation

4,869 Viewed

More condo projects launched to meet demand as area becomes new major financial hub
Ratchadaphisek Road from Asoke through to the Rama IX junction is set to become a major new financial hub and central business district as financial organisations open offices there, and more than Bt100 billion worth of condominium projects have been launched in this location over the past couple of years, according to a survey by The Nation.
This boom in new office buildings began in 2012. One is the Stock Exchange of Thailand’s new Bt5-billion headquarters. It will be complete by the end of this year, and staff will make the move in 2015. 
The SET’s choice of this location challenged financial institutions to open branches nearby.
Meanwhile, insurance firm AIA also opened its new Bt6-billion office complex in this area in the middle of this year.
Grand Canal Land (GLand) is also developing Grand Rama 9, including the G Land Tower and a skyscraper tentatively called the “Super Tower”, that will be a mixed-used project combining offices, retail and a six-star hotel. The buildings have a combined floor space of 1.12 million square metres and entail an overall investment of more than Bt98 billion.
A number of leading property developers – Pruksa Real Estate, Sansiri, Noble Development, AP (Thailand), Land & Houses, Ananda Development, and Supalai – have launched residential projects to support the new demand for housing close to people’s workplaces in the Ratchada-Rama IX-Asoke area since 2012. These condo projects are worth more than Bt100 billion.
For example, Noble Development has launched the Bt2.8-billion Noble Revolve Ratchada 2, while Pruksa Real Estate has introduced the Condolette Midst Rama 9 condominium, worth up to Bt2 billion and comprising 433 units.
Pruksa’s project follows the successful launch two years ago of its Bt1.35-billion Ivy Ampio condominium, which has been sold out. Ivy Ampio units are being transferred to customers late this year and early next.
Supalai has introduced 10 condominiums together worth more than Bt10 billion on Ratchada-phisek Road since the beginning of last year. They will be completed this year.
Meanwhile, AP (Thailand)’s latest condominium, Rhythm Asoke, is worth Bt1.5 billion and comprises 385 units, while Aspire Rama IX worth Bt2.4 billion has 663 units.
Ananda Development is developing Ideo Mobi Rama IX worth about Bt2 billion that has 703 units.
LPN Development is also developing two condominium projects here, Lumpini Park Rama IX and Lumpini Place Rama IX-Ratchada, worth about Bt4 billion and with a total of 2,705 units. They are already complete.
 
MRT a major draw
One of the main reasons the area from the Rama IX junction through to Asoke is such a popular location for office property, as well as for residential projects, is its proximity to the MRT underground rail system.
The area also continues to have more freehold land available for the development of residential projects than areas such as Sukhumvit and Rama I, close to Siam Square, where space is limited and land prices are higher than those suitable for homes costing no more than Bt200,000 per square metre.
Jones Lang LaSalle (Thailand) managing director Suphin Meechuchep said this location had been attracting property firms since the MRT began operating in 1999. And when the SET decided to build its headquarters there three year ago, that challenged financial firms to expand into the area. 
The expectation is that this will be a new central business district now that Sukhumvit, Sathorn and Silom have high density and limited available land for commercial and residential development.
The boom in new condominiums and office buildings opening on this part of Ratchadaphisek Road has boosted the price of land in the area to an average of Bt800,000 per square wah (Bt200,000 per square metre), up 33 per cent from Bt600,000 per square wah in 2011.
Condominium prices, meanwhile, have risen by an average of 20 per cent over the same period.
This has driven new project launches costing more than Bt2 million per unit.

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