Overlooked Dawbon drawing developers for location and price

Dawbon township has a reputation as a place to drive through, not a place to live in. Sandwiched between Thaketa township and the Pazundaung creek, and previously host to poor infrastructure links and constant flooding, at first glance it did not seem to have a lot going for it.

But rising prices for Yangon real estate are leading buyers to seek out previously forgotten areas.

Developers say they are starting to notice Dawbon. The large Star City project in nearby Thanlyin township brought buyers through the area, while improved infrastructure links across to the Pazundaung creek to Yangon have eased transportation concerns.

Although Dawbon does not yet have the large-scale construction projects common in other Yangon townships, it is becoming home to lots of smaller projects, and looks ripe to attract some larger developments.

“Dawbon is only a 20-minute drive from downtown and close to Thanlyin township, which has good housing projects,” said Ko Min Min Soe, senior agent of Mya Pan Thakin real estate.

“Because it’s between Thanlyin and downtown, it’s only natural prices would rise there,” he said.

Speculators have previously skipped over the township, as it has been beset by flooding. But with better roads, a large number of apartments and condominiums are under construction in the township, said U Aung Min from Myat Min construction.

It also had poor transportation links to downtown until the Maha Bandoola bridge was completed in 2000.

Local resident U Myint Aye said nobody had wanted to live there before because of the transportation problems and constant road flooding.

“Many people have been moving here with the new roads being constructed,” he said.

Higher property prices have resulted from the out-of-area buyers. Although it is increasingly gaining a reputation as a bedroom community, it has narrow lots and has attracted little attention from those wanting to start businesses, said U Yan Aung, general manager of Asia Builder Construction.

“Still, it’s a lot closer to downtown than other bedroom communities to the north of the city,” he said.

Real estate agents quoted prices to The Myanmar Times starting at K100 million for condominiums with elevators, with more simple flats selling for K40 million to K50 million.

Speculators are actively purchasing condominiums in the area, though there is less interest in its small housing market, said Galaxy real estate agent Daw Cho Cho Win.

“It’s not only the Dawbon rental market that’s active, we’re also seeing lots of buying and selling there – though the price is climbing high, obviously,” she said. “The fact that it’s in a good location is becoming more obvious.”

The spate in buildings has led to two Dawbons: on the one hand there are parts with lots of modern condominiums, while other areas are predominatelty undeveloped wooden huts. U Yan Aung said that if trends continue there will soon be a lot more condominiums. Already condominiums right next to wooden huts is a common sight.

“Dawbon township gets more developed the closer you are to Maha Bandoola bridge [which links to Yangon’s downtown],” U Yan Aung said. “It’s likely more buildings will be built and land prices will continue growing, and many more people will be interested to live there.”


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