By Carmelito Q. Francisco,

DAVAO CITY — Companies behind the newest township development in the city, the Azuela Cove, hope to complete the project within the next 10 years.

Azuela Cove-Ayala
Artist’s rendering of Azuela Cove, a waterside community by Ayala Land and Alcantara Group. —

At the launch of the 25-hectare mixed-use project located at what used to be the plywood plant of the Alcantara Group, Enrique B. Manuel, Jr., Ayala Land, Inc. assistant vice-president, said the company is set invest P20 billion in the project as it takes advantage of the city emerging to become the “most lucrative market” in the Visayas and Mindanao.

The project, he said, will also help make the city “the most vibrant city centers in the Southeast Asian Region” as the developer has also brought St. Luke’s Medical Center to set up a 250-bed hospital in the project.

“This huge capital outlay is expected to provide more opportunities for the city,” he said, adding that the project is expected to create about 13,000 jobs over time.

The first phase of the project, including the hospital, is expected to be operating by 2022.

The Alcantara Group is known for building 11 residential communities in Mindanao including Ladislawa, Woodridge Park, Las Terrazas and Northcrest. Ayala has established 55 grown centers and 22 estates all over the country.

Ayala also has a presence in the city with its anchor project Abreeza Estate which includes the Abreeza Mall, Seda Hotel, Alveo and Avida residential towers and a BPO corporate center. It has invested around P15 billion in the city in the last eight years and eyes another P10 billion in the next two to three years.

“We are projecting a P20-billion investment in the next 8-10 years to activate Azuela Cove,” Mr. Manuel said in an interview.

Ayala Land is also bringing to the city, through the project, its exclusive condominium brand, the Ayala Land Premier. The builder is working on getting the necessary permits so it can sell it to the upscale market.

“We are confident that the market is ready for our project (even when the prices are more expensive than the present projects in the city),” he told BusinessWorld after the launch.

Aside from the hospital and the high-end condominium development, Azuela Cove — placed under the Aviana Development Corp. — will also feature key amenities like a soccer field that meets international standards and a 2,000-square-meter tent city, which can accommodate about 1,500 events for concerts and other outdoor events.

Another component will be a retail outlet of about 2,000 square meters that will offer new brands and new dining establishments. — with Carmencita A. Carillo