Zorlu buys KGM land with record $800 million bid (TR)

Zorlu Holding, one of Turkey's leading industry groups, has become the new owner of General Directorate of Highways (KGM) land in Zincirlikuyu, Istanbul, with a record €567 million ($800 million) bid.

Zorlu Real Estate, a subsidiary of the group, won the 96,505-square-meter piece of property, which is located in one of the most expensive districts of the city. Zorlu Group's chairman, Ahmet Nazif Zorlu, said they are planning to invest as much as $400 million in the property.

Zorlu responded to reporters' questions after the tender and said: "We have now entered into a sector that is totally new for us. We want to contribute to our country with a new value by producing a project that is worthy of Turkey." Zorlu stated that they are willing to pay the money all at once, in cash. "Either we will use our own resources or we will use loans." The payment may either be in cash or in installments. If the company choses the installment option, it still has to pay half of the price in cash anyway.

Dubai International Properties, which has recently changed its name to Sama Dubai, had agreed with the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality to take over the land and construct two artistic skyscrapers to be known as the Dubai Towers of Istanbul. The Dubai groups would give the municipality half of the property there in return. But as public opinion strongly objected to the deal on grounds that a tender process should have taken place, the municipality had to step back and called interested parties to offer their bids in an open auction for the land. It is estimated that the 96,505-square-meter property will come down to 84,500 square meters after open-space area and a ring road have been separated. A structure of 237,000-square-meter could be built on the land. Thirty-five percent of the land is allocated for residences, 10 percent for offices, 15 percent for shops, 30 percent for tourism and 10 percent for socio-cultural facilities. Privatization Administration (ÖIB) President Metin Kilci said, "I believe the ÖIB contributed significantly to the tender of one of the most valuable plots of land in Istanbul, which is taking big strides to become a magnetic world city."

Source: Today's Zaman

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