On a bright Sunday afternoon, a small crowd is queuing outside some of the newer establishments at the commercial lots in Jalan SS18/1B in Subang Jaya. The once-quiet, old area has been rejunevated with trendy tenants.
The newer additions include Australian-inspired The Foxhole Bakery Café, which is decked out in blue wooden trimmings and metal décor and offers an extensive brunch menu. A few doors away, health-conscious patrons are seen visiting La Juiceria Superfoods while others are seen taking pictures and enjoying the wide selection of ice-cream at trendy artisanal gelato place Piccoli Lotti.
Commenting on the resurgence of the area, LaurelCap Sdn Bhd director Stanley Toh says: “The row of 2-storey shoplots fronting the New Pantai Expressway (NPE) has seen its fair share of transformation in terms of tenants.
“For many years, it was a mixture of businesses ranging from laundry services to a car mechanic shop. Lately, however, the trend has been moving towards restaurants devoted to healthy eating, cafés and a couple of Chinese restaurants.”
Other notable tenants there include Chinese restaurants Restoran Xfrens, Restoran Kar Hiong, Restoran Bintang Kemuning (Subang Jaya), curated thrift clothing shop OKGO Store and veterinarian Rain Animal Centre.
In terms of recent transactions, prices in the Jalan SS18/1B area appear bullish. “The prices of the shoplots have risen over the years. The latest transaction was at 29 Jalan SS18/1B, which measures some 1,430 sq ft in land area. It was sold for RM2.23 million on March 9, 2016. Prior to that, 11 Jalan SS18/1B was transacted at RM1.8 million on Aug 28, 2014. That’s a jump of almost 20% in two years,” says Toh.
In 2011, 15 Jalan SS18/1B, which has a land area of 1,429.5 sq ft, was transacted at RM1.8 million. Comparing the latest transactions with older ones, the prices of the units are clearly trending upwards.
According to Toh, the current average rental psf and yields for commercial units in the neighbourhood are steady. “The ground floor is RM3.80 psf to RM4.20 psf per month; and the first floor is RM1.80 psf to RM2.20 psf per month.”
Meanwhile, the current average price for the commercial units there is RM900 psf to RM920 psf, says Toh.
Despite the recent spike in activity, the area is not without its challenges. “Parking can be difficult there and the visibility of shops is hampered by the NPE flyover,” says Toh.
He is optimistic about the outlook for Jalan SS18/1B. “The future appears bright there, judging by the transaction prices over the years, coupled with the fact that there is a limited number of shops and the row of shops is practically fully tenanted. The value will continue to rise.”