Ho Bee Land has won the tender for a 41,366 square metre (445,260 square foot) biomedical facility in Singapore’s One-North development, according to an announcement late Monday by the SGX-listed developer.
The company controlled by property investor Chua Thian Poh clinched the two-envelope concept and price tender conducted by Singapore’s state-run Jurong Town Corporation (JTC) after having placed the high bid of S$223.6 million ($157 million) for the site near Singapore’s Buona Vista MRT in December of last year. The project known as Biopolis Phase 6 is part of JTC’s Biopolis precinct.
Ho Bee, which completed the 102,000 square metre Metropolis office complex next to the Biopolis hub in 2013, commissioned US architecture firm Skidmore Owings & Merill (SOM) as lead design architect for its latest development, while also engaging local firm DCA Architects to develop the concept.
Betting on Biomedical
In a statement Ho Bee aligned its latest project with efforts by the Singapore government to encourage the development of the biomedical science industry (BMS) in the Southeast Asian nation.
“The intent of the development is to spearhead the creation of a new generation of labs that help foster research and discovery,” said Ho Bee deputy CEO Nicholas Chua. “This is timely as the government hopes to incubate more biotech startups in Singapore as part of its drive to transform Singapore into the BMS hub of Asia.”
Ho Bee said it intends to develop the 12-storey project into a community for researchers and entrepreneurs, and is targetting a 2022 completion date.
At the S$223.6 million acquisition price, Ho Bee paid the equivalent of S$5,405 per square metre of finished space to acquire the land.
Providing Ready-to-Use Laboratories
The facility is slated to include 35,000 square metres of business park space for biomedical research and related activities, with another 6,000 square metres set aside for traditional office and retail use.
To accommodate biomedical start-ups, 2,000 square metres of Biopolis Phase 6 will be fitted out as semi- or fully-furnished laboratories, the company said. The project is also planned to include activity spaces, fitness corners and a park with a playground to liven up the One North community.
To meet growing expectations for sustainability, Ho Bee said that the project is designed to achieve the Platinum Award standard under the Green Mark standards set by Singapore’s Building and Construction Authority (BCA).
Singapore Grows a Bio-Hub
When completed, Biopolis Phase 6 will become the latest addition to a JTC facility which first began construction in 2003.
Planned as a global hub for biomedical research and development, Biopolis is located in the One North industrial area near some of the Lion City’s largest universities, including the National University of Singapore, Singapore Polytechnic and the Institute of Technical Education.
Phase 5 of the project, now known as Nucleos, was completed in 2014, and the five initial phases combine to provide 185,000 square metres of office and laboratory space.