Skytrain move set to impact condo market

Skytrain move set to impact condo market

30-day travel pass is coming to an end

The skytrain on the rails to Saint Louis station from Chong Nonsi station above Sathon Road. (Photo: Arnun Chonmahatrakool)
The skytrain on the rails to Saint Louis station from Chong Nonsi station above Sathon Road. (Photo: Arnun Chonmahatrakool)

The discontinuation of the Bangkok skytrain's 30-day pass will be a game changer for the condo market as stations near workplaces become more attractive, according to Sena Development Plc.

Kessara Thanyalakpark, Sena's managing director, said the 30-day pass gave condo buyers many location options with one fixed rate.

"After this pass is discontinued, the distance between condo and workplace will influence travel cost," she said.

For instance, condo buyers whose workplace is in the Asoke area could choose a larger condo unit at Phraek Sa skytrain station rather than a smaller one near On Nut, which is much closer to the workplace.

However, their travel expenses will double after the discontinuation of the 30-day pass as the skytrain fare cost might soar from around 3,000 baht to 6,000-7,000 baht per month, said Ms Kessara.

"In the past condo buyers had many choices, not just one or two stations. All along the line the average fare was fixed by the 30-day pass," she said.

Ms Kessara said this change is likely to rev up the condo market in some locations.

"The radius of condo locations from the buyer's workplace will be smaller, reducing from up to 10 stations to only a few stations," she said. "People will buy a home near their workplaces."

The sluggish condo market should gradually pick up as the number of unsold condo inventory decreases, said Ms Kessara. Two key drivers were a cut in condo prices and fewer new launches, she said.

Sena announced last week the acquisition of condo developer Pataranan Asset for 385 million baht. Pataranan is developing low-rise condos on Charoen Nakhon Road worth 2 billion baht, which Sena will continue to construct.

Sena also acquired two more condo projects on Rattanathibet Road and in the Bang Sue-Tao Poon area.

All three of the new projects, worth a combined 3 billion baht, are being developed under a new brand called Flexi.

The impact of the pandemic caused Sena to cut its 2021 presales target to 7.1 billion baht from 11 billion, slashing its transfer target to 6.94 billion baht from 10 billion.

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