Monday, 13 October 2008

ZipRealty Adds Walk Score Ratings for all Homes for Sale on Site

A home’s proximity to local retailers, schools, and restaurants increasingly important to today’s buyers grappling with high gas prices and desire for “walkable” neighborhoods.

EMERYVILLE, Calif., (October 13, 2008) – With higher gas prices fueling online searches for homes close to local businesses, schools and mass transit stations, ZipRealty announced this week it has integrated Walk Score ratings – the relative “walkability” score of a home on a 100-point scale – into all home listings on its popular home buying site.

Home buyers working with ZipRealty in any of its 35 operating markets across the U.S. can locate listed homes’ walkability scores on under each listing’s “Neighborhood Info” tab. Scores are calculated by Walk Score according to a formula based on a home’s proximity to grocery stores, restaurants, coffee shops, parks, movies, bars, mass transit stations and more.

“With gas prices going through the roof, our buyers want homes closer to where they work, local stores, and public transportation,” says Patrick Lashinsky, ZipRealty’s President and CEO. “A while back, we added information regarding proximity to transit stations in urban areas and Yelp-rated businesses near the homes for sale on our site. This new partnership takes the idea to the next level.”

ZipRealty operates in nine of the top 10 most walkable cities in the U.S., according to Walk Score, including New York, San Francisco, Boston, Seattle, Chicago and Washington, D.C.

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Malaysia's Largest Urban Development

The Iskandar Investment Board (IIB) yesterday launched Malaysia's largest urban development at Cityscape Dubai.

Medini Iskandar, a 2,300 acre (920 hectares) international mixed-use urban development project consisting of nine clusters, should bring in about Dh20 billion in the next 15 to 20 years, said Arlida Ariff, managing director of the Malaysian-based Iskandar Investment Board.

IIB holds a 30 per cent stake in the Medini development.

It will be located on prime Greenfield land in the heart of Nusajaya which lies between Malay-sia's second crossing to Singapore and the southern Johor state's New Administrative Centre

At a press conference unveiling the project, Ariff said the development enjoyed the support of the Malaysian government.

"The development has been accepted by the government of Malaysia. It enjoys the incentives that could only be given by the government," she said.

Iskandar partnered with established Middle East developers on the project with the Mubadala Development Company leading a consortium called Global Capital including Aldar Properties and Millennium Development International.

"Medini Iskandar is a very exciting project for the consortium.

"The strength of the relationships within the consortium and with the Malaysian government is a major driving force behind Medini Iskandar," said John Thomas, chairman of Global Capital's board of directors.

Medini is IIB's first offering on the international property scene.

The nine clusters will include lifestyle, leisure, culture, wellness centre and a finance district.

The lifestyle cluster includes the development of 1,240 acres (496 hectares) of land into a city centre, golf village, medical and wellness village, amusement bay and residential district.

Construction will begin by year-end and will be completed in three years, Ariff said.

The International Financial District is poised to become a "world class hub of Islamic finance in Southeast Asia."