Ayala Land to kick start Areza estate with retail project

AYALA LAND, Inc. is planning to build a 1,500-square-meter (sq.m.) retail project in its estate in Lipa City, Batangas to kick start commercial operations in the development.

“We’re already planning a small retail project in this area to basically activate the project. We’re looking at a small retail development, probably about 1,500 sq.m. of gross leasing area,” Ayala Land Estate Head for Areza Jay S. Teodoro said in an interview.

“But that’s just to start the project. We normally continue depending on the market conditions,” he added.

On Friday, Ayala Land broke ground for Areza, its 92-hectare master-planned and mixed-use estate in Batangas in which it is investing P9.8 billion for the initial phase.

The development, which is the company’s first estate in the province, is envisioned to be the new downtown of Lipa City.

Areza’s first locator will be the Lipa City Hall, which broke ground in March and is expected to be completed by 2025. The city hall will sit on a five-hectare lot donated by Ayala Land through a partnership.

“In addition, the Department of Agriculture will be operating the food terminal in this location,” Ayala Land President and Chief Executive Officer Bernard Vincent O. Dy.

The initial phase will be the development of 21 hectares of the estate that includes the five-hectare city hall, two-hectare Lipa CIty Trading Center, church, fresh produce market, and small retail area. Up to 15 hectares will be allocated for the gross floor area of commercial projects.

“We already started offering lots. In fact, we got huge interest in the commercial lots in the development,” Mr. Teodoro said.

About 99 lots in the estate will be offered with an average size of 500 to 1,000 sq.m. The starting price for the lots is P60,000 per sq.m. Ayala Land expects around P3 billion from the sale.

“[The P9.8 billion investment] does not include the future investment in the future buildings in the project,” Mr. Teodoro clarified.

According to Mr. Teodoro, Ayala Land has been targeting to develop projects in Lipa City as the property company sees it as one of the most progressive cities in the province.

“We’ve been trying to position in Lipa a long time ago. Though we are able to do so, though we have presence through our residential brands, this is really the first mixed-use estate of Ayala Land in Batangas,” Mr. Teodoro said.

According to Mr. Dy, Areza will be developed with a variety of uses to respond to the needs of locators in the estate.

“We will bring in our projects — our residential from high-end to affordable, we will bring in retail, we will bring in offices as well as hotels and that’s within our product line,” Mr. Dy said.

“Of course, we can’t do this on our own. We need to partner with institutions to make sure that we complete the uses,” he added.

Areza is the 48th estate of Ayala Land nationwide and its fourth estate south of Manila. — Justine Irish D. Tabile