Friday 09 Jun 2023
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This article first appeared in City & Country, The Edge Malaysia Weekly on February 20, 2023 - February 26, 2023

IJM Land Bhd plans to launch landed residential properties Phases 2E and 2H of its 32.77-acre Sierra Hijauan development at the end of this month.

In an interview with City & Country, IJM Land senior general manager Chai Kian Soon says Sierra Hijauan, which is located in Ukay Perdana, Ampang, is being developed in eight phases. “Phases 2E and 2H are the latest launches, being the fifth and sixth phases of the development respectively.”

A leasehold and strata-titled project, Sierra Hijauan has a total gross development value (GDV) of RM576.36 million and will comprise 310 residential units when all phases are completed.

On the development’s concept, Chai says, “Inspired by both nature and the landscape, the homes are intricately designed to bring as much of nature in but still retain the luxury that Sierra Hijauan offers. Nestled in the foothills of the Ampang Forest Reserve, it is an exclusive sanctuary that is as close to nature as can be.”

He also clarifies that the area on which Sierra Hijauan is being developed is not gazetted land and that it is exactly on the fringe — or more accurately, at the foothills — of the forest reserve.

Chai: Sierra Hijauan is the ideal place for the new norm. It is a unique residential enclave of landed homes, located at the foothills of a serene forest reserve. (Photo by Zahid Izzani/The Edge)

Spacious units

Phase 2E, which has a GDV of RM60 million, will see 24 units of 2½-storey semi-detached homes and a 3-storey bungalow being developed on 2.78 acres. The semidees will have a built-up of 3,537 sq ft and land area of 40ft by 80ft, while the bungalow will have a built-up of 4,660 sq ft and land area of 4,865 sq ft. 

The selling prices of the properties range from RM2.329 million to RM3.339 million. The maintenance fee, estimated at 20 sen psf per month, is inclusive of the sinking fund. 

Phase 2H, which has a GDV of RM116 million and sits on 5.51 acres, will comprise 78 units of 2-storey link villas, with built-ups of 2,327 to 2,376 sq ft and land areas of 22ft by 75ft and 22ft by 72.5ft, as well as  2½-storey link villas with a built-up of 2,583 to 2,585 sq ft and land area of 24ft by 60ft.

Both phases are expected to be completed in February 2026.

Chai says all the units have an open-plan concept, which allows flexibility in interior layout planning and design. “The open-plan layout allows for seamless connection between the living room, dining room and kitchen area, providing more flexibility to the occupants. The spaces are well designed to ensure activities flow smoothly and effectively from one zone to another.”

On the exterior, he explains that the units will feature a mix of modern and traditional designs. “For these phases, we knew a modern façade design inspired by a juxtaposition of rectangular frames and vertical planes that create depth and vitality would work well.

“When we first saw the land [Sierra Hijauan], we knew we wanted to capitalise on the surroundings by adding plenty of windows to make way for natural lighting and ventilation. Similarly, units in Phases 2E and 2H will have large windows, which will naturally light up the homes with beams of sunlight.

“In addition, the 2½-storey link villas in Phase 2H will have additional bedrooms and bathrooms, which is somewhat different and I would say larger than the previous 2-storey link villas in Phases 2C and 2D.”

Explaining how the latest phases will be different from previous ones, Chai says, “The façade design is different from the previous phases, but we have maintained the modern-traditional concept. More importantly, the interior layout design has been improved based on customers’ feedback. They wanted to be able to customise their own space, so we will provide open layouts to ease the process.”

A view of Sierra Hijauan and the Ampang Forest Reserve from the development’s clubhouse (Photo by IJM Land)

Demand for space and location

According to Chai, Phases 2E and 2H have garnered a positive response prior to the launch at the end of this month. “I believe Sierra Hijauan acts as a natural attraction for large and multigenerational families who want to buy large landed property in the city.

“The majority of registrants and our previous buyers come from high-income households with professional backgrounds and are 30 to 50 years old. According to our data, a large number of our buyers are upgraders from the Taman Melawati, Setiawangsa and Wangsa Maju areas.”

He points out that the pandemic has changed the way people want to live. “The Covid-19 pandemic has got a lot of people rethinking their living conditions. Many people don’t want to live within just four walls and have compact spaces anymore. Most of us are getting used to staying indoors but also prefer to have some outdoor space. 

“Sierra Hijauan is the ideal place for the new norm. It is a unique residential enclave of landed homes, located at the foothills of a serene forest reserve.”

Facilities in Sierra Hijauan include a meditation deck, garden with water features, picnic area, jogging track, shrubs art, barbecue area, children’s play square, water cascade, basketball court, swimming pool, clubhouse gymnasium, games room, outdoor fitness and reflexology area, yoga area, children’s playground and even hammocks.

Artists’ impressions of the façade and bedroom of units in Phase 2E (Photo by IJM Land)

Being located 15km from the Kuala Lumpur city centre, Sierra Hijauan is neighbour to a number of well-established townships, including Taman Melawati, Setiawangsa, Wangsa Maju and Setapak.

“These are immediate neighbourhoods, meaning they are equipped with plenty of public amenities such as eateries, convenience stores, launderettes, schools, petrol stations, supermarkets, shopping malls and hospitals. There are also plenty of mom-and-pop shops, which provide affordable and nostalgic products,” says Chai.

He explains that the area is connected to the developer’s very own Jalan Ukay Perdana, which brings residents straight into Sierra Hijauan and other neighbouring developments. It is also well connected to major highways and roads such as Middle Ring Road 2 (MRR2), Duta-Ulu Kelang Expressway (DUKE), Ampang-Kuala Lumpur Elevated Highway (AKLEH), Jalan Ampang and Karak Highway, as well as the upcoming East Klang Valley Expressway (EKVE).

“The EKVE has been under construction for almost 10 years now. The highway, which spans about 39.5km, was launched in September 2015 and construction commenced. The highway has been substantially completed, with only a few miles remaining,” says Chai.

“The highway is near Sierra Hijauan and connects the development to Jalan Ukay Perdana. When it is opened, this link will allow our residents to avoid the MRR2’s heavy southbound traffic.”

In terms of safety, the developer has taken the necessary measures to ensure the stability of the foothills, he says. “There have been many developments in the area over the past 15 years and everything is safe thus far. We didn’t have to go through the Jawatankuasa Teknikal Pembangunan Kawasan Sensitif Alam Sekitar (JTPKSAS) because the area in which Sierra Hijauan is being developed is below the 25° slope. If it is 25° and below, the land is not under the ‘kawasan sensitif’ category and is safe to be developed.”

Artists’ impressions of the exterior and living room of units in Phase 2H (Photo by IJM Land)

Upcoming launches

Almost 52% of Sierra Hijauan has been completed, with a few projects under construction. Phases 2B1 and 2B2, which have been completed, have seen a take-up rate of 100% and an occupancy rate of more than 80%. Phases 2C and 2D are still under construction and are expected to be completed in May and August 2024, respectively. Both phases have been fully taken up.

Following the launch of Phases 2E and 2H, IJM Land plans to launch Phases 2F and 2G in October this year. With a GDV of RM51.7 million, the 2.39-acre Phase 2F will have 20 units of 2½-storey semi-detached homes, with a built-up of 3,537 sq ft, and 3-storey bungalows with built-ups of 4,660 to 5,399 sq ft.

Phase 2G has a GDV of RM47 million and is spread across 3.28 acres. This phase will have 17 units of 2½- and 3-storey semi-detached homes, with built-ups of 3,537 to 4,511 sq ft, as well as 3-storey bungalows with a built-up of 4,660 sq ft.

Apart from Sierra Hijauan, IJM plans to launch several other projects this year, says Chai. At its Alam Suria township in Puncak Alam, the developer is looking to build a 345-unit apartment project called Daffodil Residence with a GDV of RM122 million.

In Seremban 2, projects being developed include the 166-unit Rimbun Perdana commercial development, which has a GDV of RM249 million, and 204 units of 2-storey link homes with a GDV of RM142 million. 

IJM is also planning to launch shopoffices, serviced apartments and 2-storey link homes in its 1,879-acre Bandar Rimbayu township, which is located adjacent to Kota Kemuning in Shah Alam. Named Avela, 445 units of 2-storey link homes, with a combined GDV of RM572 million, will be developed in three phases. The serviced apartment project Meta Residences will have 333 units with a GDV of RM180 million and 186 shopoffices with a GDV of RM130 million. 

“With the rising number of occupancies in our residential development [Bandar Rimbayu], we see more demand for retail projects. Furthermore, the area surrounding Bandar Rimbayu has many industrial developments and as they grow, they will request for offices. 

“We see the shopoffices as support services for the other developments in the township. The serviced apartments already have neighbourhood stores such as Lotus’s and McDonald’s. This will cater to the younger buyers, primarily first-time homebuyers and small families,” says Chai, adding that IJM is actively looking to secure more land for other developments in the future.

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