The plan to develop Yeouido into a financial center is in full swing after 14 years안전놀이터. A detailed master plan to transform Yeouido into a Korean version of Manhattan and a Korean version of Wall Street was presented on Thursday.

The plan for the central business district will be added to the Yeouido apartment reconstruction plan unveiled last month, and will include more than 60 floors of apartments and skyscrapers. As the development plan materializes, the expectations of residents of the rebuilt apartments are also rising.

The Seoul Metropolitan Government announced that it has established the “Yeouido Financial Center District Unit Plan (Draft),” which includes an increase in the floor area ratio and relaxation of height regulations, for the Dongyeo-do area (1.056 million square meters) and will be open for public viewing from the 25th.

The plan to develop Yeouido as a financial center was first established in 2009. Yeouido, which is home to the Financial Supervisory Service and large securities and financial investment companies, was designated as a comprehensive financial center in 2009 and a financial special development promotion district the following year.

With the release of a detailed master plan 14 years later, the development of Yeouido is expected to begin in earnest. As previously announced in the ‘2040 Seoul Urban Basic Plan,’ building regulations have been significantly relaxed. The master plan for the apartment district, released last month, also allows for the rebuilding of apartments over 200 meters high, which will completely change the look of the entire neighborhood.

The most prominent parts of the plan are the removal of height restrictions and floor area ratio incentives. The threshold height is proposed to be 350 meters, which is higher than the current height of Park One (333 meters) in Yeouido. Furthermore, the plan allows for further relaxation during the detailed planning process, effectively eliminating height limits in Yeouido.

As a result, a 350-meter skyscraper can be built on the site of the current Korea Exchange (currently 103 meters high), right next to Yeouido Station on Subway Line 5, and a 300-meter skyscraper on the KBS Annex site near Seokgang Station on Subway Line 9.

Floor area ratio incentives are also dramatic. The current 800% floor area ratio has been increased to over 1200%. The secondary residential area (school site), which had a 7-story height limit and a 250% floor area ratio, was upgraded to a quasi-residential area and the floor area ratio was increased to 500%.

Yeouido’s appearance is expected to change as the Seoul Metropolitan Government unveils the basic plans for the Yeouido Financial Center District and Apartment District one after another. Courtesy of Yonhap News Agency.
Expectations for the development of Yeouido are also rising as blueprints for the reconstruction of apartments in the area are coming out one after another. Last month, the Seoul Metropolitan Government unveiled the ‘District Unit Plan for Yeouido Apartment District (draft)’. The apartment district was upgraded from the three general residential zones to semi-residential and general commercial zones, allowing for a floor area ratio of up to 800% and a height of more than 200 meters.

As regulations are greatly relaxed, private development interests are expected to increase significantly. Floor area ratio is the maximum floor area of a building that can be built on a limited site.

The higher the floor area ratio, the higher the utilization of the building, which increases the development profit. For this reason, even in the same area, land prices can vary by two to three times or more depending on the floor area ratio and land use.

Expectations of rising prices are also rising among residents of the reconstruction projects in Yeouido. The reconstruction of old complexes in Yeouido, which are approaching their 50th anniversary, has been stalled for a long time due to height restrictions and enhanced safety inspections. However, the reconstruction project is expected to accelerate as the Seoul Metropolitan Government has relaxed the height regulation for reconstructed apartments in Yeouido, and is also finalizing the development of business districts. The rise in house prices due to large-scale development may also act as a factor to increase business viability.

However, it is expected that there will be controversy over preferential treatment due to the relaxation of floor area ratio and height regulations. Most of the areas included in the plan are privately owned. While it is common for floor area ratio incentives to increase public contributions, Seoul has kept the contribution rate at 10% in the Yeouido development plan.

This compares to the Sampyo site in Seongsu-dong, which the city is developing as a global business district, where up to 60 percent of the incentive is returned as public contribution through the ‘pre-negotiation system’.

In response, a Seoul Metropolitan Government official said, “Yeouido has been designated as a comprehensive financial center since 2009 and has announced development plans several times until this year’s 2040 Urban Basic Plan.” “This basic plan is only a sketch of the big picture, but specific public contributions and contribution payments will be determined in the detailed development plan,” he explained.

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