THE 19th-storey office building Park Centrale of the Cebu Landmasters Inc. (CLI) in Cebu IT Park was topped off yesterday.

The building will be fully operational by the end of the second quarter this year, according to CLI chief operating officer Jose Franco Soberano.

“This will be a busy and exciting year for us as we begin the operation of this building which we envisioned to be the top office building here in Cebu IT Park,” he said.

CLI is the first Cebu developer to receive an award from the prestigious Philippines Property Awards 2014, when its flagship office project Park Centrale bagged the Best Commercial Development in Cebu award.

The office building reaped the recognition based on the following criteria – design and concept, value for money, sales performance, construction quality and green building standards. Park Centrale qualifies for the South East Asia Property Award, which will be held in Singapore.

50 locators

Park Centrale will house 50 locators composed of retail establishments, law firms, accounting firms, a bank and BPO offices are set to occupy the building.

The retail space at the ground floor will be occupied by Burger King, a convenience store and a major bank.

CLI will have have its headquarters at the building’s 10th floor.

His father, Jose Soberano III, the firm’s chief executive officer disclosed that since the building’s construction they have already received overwhelming interests from various tenants.

Soberano said demand for office space will continue to increase as foreign firms continue to see the Philippines as the preferred location to support their back room operations. The country also has hardworking and qualified talents that fit their requirements.

“We are confident that the demand for office space will continue to be there as the country’s economy continues to do well,” he said.

The government’s infrastructure spending, increased disposable income, and consumer spending as well as the upcoming election will generate a positive impact on the property sector, said Soberano.

He said that even the oil price drop will benefit the sector as this movement will translate to lower construction costs and more disposable income for consumers due to reduced cost of living allowance.

The Association of Southeast Asean (Asean) integration, on the other hand, will also open opportunities for real estate players. Although it will open more competition, the integration, according to Soberano, will broaden the market potential of both big and small players.

Given the continued boom of the property sector, Soberano said his company is eyeing more projects in Cebu both in the residential and office segments.

Aside from Park Centrale, the firm is set to complete the buildings 1,2 and 3 of Mivesa, and Midori Plains this year. Other ongoing projects are the Baseline Center, an office building in Cebu Business Park, a condo-residential project in Cagayan de Oro City and Casa Mira, an economic housing.

Soberano also said he will convert his Labangon property, where CLI is currently holding its office, into a mid-rise condo development. The project will be launched this year.