FILINVEST Land Inc.(FLI) requested Cebu City Hall to finalize the power supply, telecommunications and transport utilities at the South Road Properties (SRP), as it prepares to start construction of its P25-billion project this December.

It also wants the City Council to confirm through a resolution the City Attorney's legal opinion clearing them of any obligation to pay transfer taxes amounting to P3 million.

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Other than the city treasurer's move to collect transfer taxes from them, which he said was a minor “hitch,” Tristan las Marias, FLI's vice president for Visayas and Mindanao, said the City Government has been cooperative in their joint venture.

FLI will break ground later this year for the first 150 residential units in its joint venture with the City, and the development of a commercial and entertainment complex in the 10.6-hectare Pond F.

Las Marias said they can turn over at least P72 million to the City Government by June next year if all 150 units are sold immediately.

The amount represents the City's 10-percent share in the joint venture for the development of 60 residential buildings on the 40-hectare lot.

“We have received quite a significant amount of intentions and reservations from interested buyers... Our arrangements with the City is we would be able to remit almost quarterly what we collect. So if we can convert all these reservations to actual sales and collection by the time we get our license to sell.

Hopefully by second quarter next year, we would be able to remit the share of the City,” las Marias said.

Its license to sell and collect payment for the residential units is scheduled for release this October.

First phase

Some P4 billion will be poured in for the first phase of Citta di Mare, which includes four five-story buildings in Amalfi Coast, the car-free residential area; and Il Corso, the commercial and entertainment area on Pond F.

FLI is the first investor to buy a property at the SRP. In February last year, it signed the contract for the purchase of the 10.6-hectare lot for P1.5 billion and the joint venture to develop the 40-hectare area.

The City's contribution to the joint venture is the lot, while FLI will invest in the construction of 60 residential buildings with commercial and retail areas. Some 12,000 to 15,000 condominium units will be constructed.

For the first four buildings in Amalfi Oasis, 150 units will be constructed this December and these are expected to be completed in 12 months.

Most of the units have a floor area of 60 square meters at P75,000 to P80,000 per square meter. At P4.8 million per unit, FLI can sell the first 150 units for P720 million.

From that, Las Marias said the City could earn at least P72 million for its share from the joint venture.

In a press briefing yesterday, Las Marias presented their plans for the 50.6-hectare Citta di Mare, which is Italian for “City by the Sea.”

Once completed in 20 to 25 years, Citta di Mare will resemble the seaside communities in Italy.

Features

It will be an environment and child-friendly residential area, he said, since 65-percent of the 40-hectare development will be parks and open spaces, and it will be a completely car-free zone.

Road networks and parking spaces will be underground, and motorized vehicles will not be allowed in the residential area, las Marias said.

The 10-hectare Il Corso will also feature an amphitheater, an amusement park, a beach sandbox, a hotel, retail and commercial centers and a water sports activity area.

Its centerpiece would be a Spanish-era galleon that will feature a museum and restaurants.

In a press briefing yesterday, las Marias said the City has been a “very cooperative” joint venture partner in terms of providing the necessary utilities at the SRP.

“The City has been cooperative in terms of things we need from them. They have discussed their plans on water and power facilities, so I guess it's just a matter of implementing these things,” he said.

Water supply is already available, but the City has yet to ink a deal with the power supplier and set up telecommunications and transport utilities, particularly the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system.

He also said it would help them market the project better if the City can fast track the implementation of the BRT as the means of transport in SRP. The BRT will be set up in 2013 yet.

“I think the capacity of the City to contract a party or generate its own power to support developments in the SRP, that's going to be very critical. They're doing studies and they're talking to business groups on how they can provide this basic utility. I hope they can have a firmer plan in the soonest possible time,” he told reporters.

In a separate interview, Joel Mari Yu of the Cebu Investment and Promotions Center, the marketing and management arm of the SRP, said the water and power supply is not an issue.

The Metropolitan Cebu Water District was already contracted for the water supply.

Although the City still has to enter into an agreement with the Visayan Electric Co. for special arrangements on power supply at the SRP, Yu said it is providing electricity to establishments at the SRP at present.