By Arra B. Francia, Reporter

SM DEVELOPMENT Corp. (SMDC) launched on Tuesday a P3-billion high-rise condominium building in Dasmariñas, Cavite, where it aims to take advantage of the large student population in the area.

Green 2 Residences marks SMDC’s first project in Cavite, which will have a total of three towers sitting on a 1.6-hectare lot surrounded by De La Salle University (DLSU) Dasmariñas, De La Salle Health Sciences Institute, and Emilio Aguinaldo College Cavite.

“We have started now to expand outside the metropolis. Our latest offering, Green 2, is our first project in Cavite. We are inspired by the success of our school hub projects, starting with Sun Residences in University Belt, Blue Residences in Ateneo, Green in La Salle, and these have had very strong rental income for our buyers,” SMDC Executive Vice-President Jose Mari H. Banzon said in a media roundtable in Makati City on Tuesday.

The three universities in Dasmariñas have an estimated student population of over 20,000, which SMDC estimates would grow at by 2% annually.

“We interviewed the schools there and found out that only 700 beds of formal dormitory setup are available. There is a great lack in supply to students. Even as we see the student population growing, dormitories and the schools are not growing at the same pace,” Mr. Banzon said.

These areas are what SMDC calls “University Towns,” where students are expected to take up most of the developments. With this, the company is primarily targeting investors to buy the properties and then rent them out to students.

“There are two ways of investing in the area and leasing out the business. If you have a unit, you can rent it out to students for a long-term lease, you can serve the college population… We also have an alternative market for short-term lease rates… for faculty members that are visiting, doctors and nursing staff, parents of visiting children, conferences and seminars in the campus,” Mr. Banzon explained, noting the high yields for other properties.

For instance, units at the first Green Residences tower, located across DLSU along Taft Avenue, now have an average value of P2.7 million, higher than its P1.9-million average selling price in 2011.

Green 2 Residences’ first tower will offer 1,057 units across 19 floors, with a total of 487 parking lots set to serve all three towers in the development. The ground floor will house a retail area, while amenities will be found on the second floor. This includes a swimming pool, multipurpose lawns, and study halls (constructed in Phase 1), a fitness gym (Phase 2), and a covered porch and function hall (Phase 3). There are 971 studio units available, spanning between 18.98 square meters (sq.m.) to 19.32 sq.m., and priced from P2.6 million to P2.9 million. Two-bedroom units (33.97 sq.m.) are priced between P5 million to P5.2 million, while two-bedroom end units are sold at P4.4 million to P4.5 million.

On average, each sq.m. in the development is valued at P143,000. Turnover for the first phase will start in October 2021.