Earthworks began last month on the much-anticipated multi-billion ringgit Aspen Vision City township in Bandar Cassia, Batu Kawan.
Aspen Group chief executive officer Datuk M. Murly said the company had obtained approval to start infrastructure work.
He said construction on its first project, the Verve, was expected to begin by the end of the year.
He added that the Verve, a gated commercial district of 441 shop-offices, was 85% booked.
“We received overwhelming response after our preview in February,” he said in his speech at a signing ceremony at E&O Hotel Penang.
The Verve, which is part of the 99ha Aspen Vision City, is a joint venture between Aspen Group and Ikano Pte Ltd.
Furniture super store IKEA and an integrated shopping centre by Ikano will be within this project, scheduled for completion in 2025.
Ikano managing director Christian Rojkjaer said IKEA and the shopping centre were due to open in 2018 and 2020 respectively.
“We are excited about opportunities in Batu Kawan as a new satellite city,” he said.
Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said the project was meticulously designed for sustainability.
He said there would also be condominiums, retail and serviced suites, hotels, a financial hub, a medical centre and an international school.
The event also saw the signing of a loan deal for RM196mil between Aspen Vision City and OCBC Bank to finance the Verve.
It includes a term loan for the land buy and a bridging loan for construction.
Murly and Rojkjaer signed the agreement with OCBC Bank (M) Bhd chief executive officer Ong Eng Bin and senior vice-president and head of corporate and commercial banking Jeffrey Teoh Nee Teik.
Also witnessing the ceremony was Aspen Group executive director and chairman Datuk Seri Nazir Ariff. - By The Star