Sequis Tower in Jakarta's CBD is set to begin operation in July next year. (Photo courtesy of Prospero Realty)

Tower Developer Upbeat Despite Slow Demand in Jakarta's CBD

BY :TABITA DIELA

APRIL 10, 2017

Jakarta. Fairpoint Realty Indonesia, the property arm of conglomerate Gunung Sewu Group, said it is confident of attracting major corporate tenants to fill in a new office tower currently being developed in Jakarta's busiest commercial district.

Farpoint's subsidiary Prospero Realty is the developer of Sequis Tower, a 39-storey office building in South Jakarta's Central Business District. Investment for the project is estimated at Rp 2.5 trillion ($188 million), excluding the cost for land acquisition.

Topping-off ceremony to celebrate the completion of the building's highest point is expected to take place in May this year, and the whole building should be ready for occupation by July 2018.

The Jakarta Globe and a select number of media was invited to a site tour of the new tower on Wednesday (05/04). As of March 29, 35 floors of the tower's total 39 floors have already been completed.

Prospero Realty President Director Dougie Crichton told reporters Sequis Tower has many things to offer future tenants, including a prime location and green building features.

The developer is working toward a platinum rating — the highest available — from US Green Building Council's (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program, a global program to measure green building excellence conducted by third-party technical reviewers.

The USGBC is a non-profit organization that promotes sustainable building design, construction and operation all over the world.

"It's a way for us to give back to the environment," Farpoint 's head of project management Mulyadi Janto said.

He added that Sequis Tower will use fewer columns and introduce a floor system that allows tenants to customize the layout of their office while keeping cords and cables stored underground, unseen.

Jusup Halimi, Farpoint Realty Indonesia's chief executive, said last month the company had already received leasing commitments on 30 percent of the building's 78,000-square meter leasable area.

Despite the developer's optimism, demand in Jakarta's office market actually slowed last year, as many companies tightened their belt fearing more global economic uncertainties.

Occupancy rate of office spaces in the capital city's CBD declined last year, according to a report from property consultant company Colliers. However, this has not dampened developers' enthusiasm to build new office towers and boost the size of leasable office area this year on hope of an economic recovery.

Ferry Salanto, Colliers' senior associate director, said Jakarta's CBD is expected to get more than 700,000 square meters of new office area this year, bringing the total leasable office area in the CBD alone to about 6.2 million square meters.

Overall, office tower occupancy rate in the CBD dropped 4.6 percent to 84.8 percent last year. In 2016, there were 5.48 million square meters of leasable office area in the commercial district.

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