Fire engulfs Wanda’s One Circular Quay project in Sydney just two weeks after property sale
Chinese billionaire Wang Jianlin’s Wanda agreed last month to sell both its Australian property projects for US$247 million
A fire engulfed a luxury Sydney property development overlooking the harbour bridge on Tuesday, just two weeks after China’s Dalian Wanda Group agreed to sell the site.
Flames leapt up a building that is being demolished at the One Circular Quay site where a residential and hotel development is under construction. Authorities closed the nearby railway station, cordoned off several roads in the central business district and evacuated neighbouring offices.
Fire crews contained the blaze by 11am local time and an investigation is under way, said a spokesman for the fire service. Some 24 construction workers at the site managed to escape without serious injury.
Chinese billionaire Wang Jianlin’s Wanda agreed last month to sell both its Australian property projects – in Sydney and the Gold Coast – for A$315 million (US$247 million). The sale extended a global asset sell-off to fund debt repayments, following increased government scrutiny on moving money out of China.
A representative for Wanda did not immediately return a call seeking comment on the fire.
One Circular Quay, which promises views of the Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge, is still under Wanda’s management, according to a spokesman for the buyer, AWH Investment Group. AWH is an affiliate of Yuhu Group Australia, a largely Australian-owned family business founded in 2012 by Chinese-born businessman Huang Xiangmo, according to its website.