Developer Soho China opened the doors to its Kohn Pedersen Fox-designed Gubei Soho project in western Shanghai’s Changning district last week, adding the RMB 5 billion ($746.7 million) office and retail project to its portfolio of commercial assets in the city.
Soho, one of China’s largest commercial-only property developers held the debut of the 38-storey tower on the city’s Hongqiao Road, near where it intersects with Yan’an Road to celebrate the addition of its seventh Shanghai property.
Soho, which is controlled by mainland power couple Pan Shiyi and Zhang Xin, completed the 158,648 square metre (1.7 million square foot) tower just less than five and a half years after buying the 16,600 square metre site for RMB 3.19 billion in 2013.
Connecting to Shanghai Thoroughfares
Located less than two kilometres away from Soho’s Tianshan Plaza project, Gubei Soho, is linked with the Yili Road Station on Shanghai’s metro line 10, which will also be served by line 15, should that open on schedule next year.
The LEED gold-certified property includes 113,416 square metres of above ground gross floor areas, of which 52,738 metres is office. The project, which in addition to its main tower, includes a separate wing building, also has 60,678 square metres of retail space.
In addition to the RMB 3.19 billion that Soho spent to acquire the land, the company estimates that it invested RMB 1.7 billion for construction of the project.
Gubei Soho was designed by James von Klemperer of Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates who was inspired by Romania’s Endless Column, designed by famed early modernist sculptor Constantin Brâncuși, according to a company statement.
Project Sales Continue
The project opening comes less than a year after Soho China sold two of the four buildings in its 350,000 square metre Sky Soho office complex to a Gaw Capital-led consortium.
The Sky Soho disposal is just the most recent in a string of project sales that generated more than RMB 12 billion for the developer since the middle of 2016 on the back of rising valuations of its completed projects.
In June 2016, the developer sold Soho Hongkou, an office and retail complex in Shanghai’s North Bund commercial area, to a joint venture led by Singapore’s Keppel Land China and Alpha Investment Partners for about RMB 3.6 billion.
One month later, in July 2016, Soho announced it was actively marketing Sky Soho, along with its Guanghualu Soho two project in Beijing. In that same month, Soho chairman Pan Shiyi told the South China Morning Post that he was willing to sell the company’s entire portfolio of 21 properties, except for “two iconic Soho buildings in Beijing and Shanghai.”
The firm has at least two other projects on the market, including the 94,300 square metre Guanghualu Soho Two in Beijing — which it put on sale in July 2017, and Soho Tianshan Plaza. The company plans to open Soho Leeza, a RMB 3.78 billion complex in Beijing in the middle of this year.