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So, I'm digging up an old thread. This project led nowhere over the last 3 years, and there was just some news today.

Hanjin Group (Korean Air), which had purchased the lot back in 2008, has announced that it will sell the building this year. Due to its close proximity to historical buildings and to schools, there are many restriction as to what can be built on this low, so it's complicated, and any project would likely need to have some public use (museum, park, other shared space,...), so it's fairly possible that the government (or city) could be interested in buying this lot.

https://news.naver.com/main/read.nhn?mode=LSD&mid=sec&sid1=101&oid=032&aid=0002922374
 

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There was an article about this project recently.

Basically nothing has really changed. Hanjin Group's chairman, Cho Yang-Ho, passed away in April 2019 and his heirs have been bickering ever since, so there is a lack of strategic decision on the group's part.

On the buyer side, Chung Sye-kyun has recently been appointed Prime Minister, and member of parliament for Jongro since 2012, has been known as pushing for this sale of the land to the governement/city before, so his appointment could help the project move forward, and is pushing for a park to be built on this lot.

It's still unclear if the land will be sold soon. I'll keep you informed.

https://www.mk.co.kr/news/realestate/view/2019/12/1100563/
 

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Hanjin Group to sell hotel assets for financial health


The Korean Air-owned site in Jongno-gu, Seoul (Yonhap)

Hanjin KAL, the holding company of airline-to-logistics conglomerate Hanjin Group, said Thursday it was looking to sell its non-core hotel assets to improve its financial health and shareholder value.

Hanjin KAL said invitations to bid for the assets had been sent to 12 firms including real estate consulting firms, accounting firms and asset management firms.

On Feb. 7, the company decided during the board meeting to sell assets related to its loss-making leisure and hotel business to focus on strengthening competitiveness of the core airline and logistics business.

The assets on sale include the Korean Air-owned 36,642 square meter site in Songhyun-dong in Jongno-gu, an entire 100 percent stake in Wangsan Leisure Development Corp., a leisure company that operates the Wangsan Marina resort in Incheon, and the Paradise Hotel building and some 65,000 square meters of land in Jeju, which is owned by the KAL Hotel Network.

Korean Air bought the Songhyeong-dong site from Samsung Life Insurance in 2009 to construct a cultural complex, but the development has faced several hurdles due to building height restrictions and cultural asset preservation, due to its proximity to the presidential office and Gyeongbok Palace.

Hanjin Group said it would accept proposals until March 24 and finalize the candidate through evaluations and presentations.

The group said that it was also reviewing whether to put the Grand Hyatt Incheon and Los Angeles-based Wilshire Grand Center up for sale to improve business profitability.
http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20200227000547
 

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Seoul City to buy lot from Hanjin Group to build park

It was announced yesterday that Seoul City has officially decided to try to build the land from Hanjin Group, and to build a large park in the area, with the two parties currently discussing the terms of the sale.

The ultimate goal of the city would be to build on this plot a park which would be mostly a forest of pine trees, as was the case during the Joseon Dynasty.

The target is for the purchase to be completed by early 2022, although it would likely take more time before the park can open.

The area is 37,000sqm, so it is quite big. If they complete the park, it would become one of the biggest in central Seoul.

Of course, central Seoul has palaces, which are quite green, but they are not open parks. Major urban regeneration projects include Cheonggyecheon and Seoullo 7017, and while these areas are nice, they are narrow and mostly made up concrete, so don't feel like a green space. Finally, they are some smaller actual parks/plazas (Seoul Plaza, Tapgol Park, Seosomun Historical Park), but they all have significant limitations, either small, far away, not feeling like a green space enough...

The current park proposal in Songhyeon-dong owned by Hanjin is also special because it is surrounded by extremely touristic areas (more so than the above-mentioned green spaces). From the park, in a clockwise direction, you have Bukchon Hanok Village, the Seoul Craft Museum scheduled to open later this year (and a bit more to the east you have Changdeokgung), Insadong, Jogyesa Temple, Gwanghwamun, Gyeongbokgung, the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art and Samcheong-dong. These are of course areas popular with Koreans too, but especially foreigners, so we'll see if they can come up with a project which can link up all these popular places, while being itself a potential new attractions for tourists and at the same time remain truthful to its heritage and respectful of the surrounding area.

https://m.news.naver.com/read.nhn?oid=005&aid=0001300442&sid1=102&mode=LSD

https://www.yna.co.kr/view/AKR20200317194400004?input=1195m

http://cnews.getnews.co.kr/view.php?ud=202003180755596785cca1ceafd_16

https://newsis.com/view/?id=NISX20200318_0000959831&cID=14001&pID=14000
 
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