‘Unprecedented interest on SM Seaside City’

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Tuesday, January 14, 2014


FOR those waiting for another shopping mall to open in Cebu, SM Prime Holdings is promising an “exciting” 2015.

Cebu’s third SM mall is expected to open in the third quarter of 2015, SM Prime Holdings vice president for Visayas Marissa Fernan told reporters yesterday.

With the scheduled opening of the SM Seaside City at the South Road Properties slated for September next year, Fernan said the interest from prospective tenants is “unprecedented,” with groups from Marks and Spencer, the Bench group and Promod as among those who were identified as those that have begun their inquiries.

Company officials believe that the location of the project drums up enough interest, saying those who pass by the South Coastal Road and those who attend mass at the San Pedro Calungsod Chapel can see what they are building.

“We are confident with the skills of our team that we will have no problem filling up the retail space,” she said.

Patterned after the SM Mall of Asia, the SM Seaside City will also see similar structures surrounding it such as an arena, convention center, hotel and commercial buildings.

They are discussing with bus operators the possibility of offering routes to the mall.

She explained that the process of getting new jeepney franchises is complicated and that the issue concerning the bus rapid transit may not be resolved before the mall opens.

But once the BRT gets approved, she said they would welcoming having a route from the SM Seaside City going to the Mactan-Cebu International Airport.

The mall is reportedly going to be the fourth largest in Asia that will come with 800 retail and dining shops, five movie theaters, an ice skating rink, four parking levels and a sky garden. Fernan said the sky garden will feature Cebuano public art that they look forward to showcase. She also assured that the structure was well-elevated and is safe from flooding.

Fernan also updated reporters on their housing project in Barangay Polambato, Bogo City, one of the areas hit by super typhoon Yolanda. She said they are looking for partners who can help in the building of 200 row houses, each unit estimated to cost P200,000 to P250,000. Once construction starts, the homes will be ready in nine months.

She said they want beneficiaries to be the ones who will maintain and secure the community they are building. SM also hopes to replicate the project in Tacloban, Palo, Guiuan, Panay and Iloilo to be able to reach 1,000 homes.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 15, 2014.

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