Complete Property Market Updates of Singapore

June 19, 2008

More space, more buzz in expanded city centre

Filed under: Commercial,General — Propertymarketupdates @ 5:43 am

Size will double with 23,000 new homes; wider lifestyle, leisure and business options

THE heart and soul of Singapore is about to get bigger – and you might get to live closer to it.

The city centre is set for an injection of 23,000 new homes in the next decade, as the Central Business District (CBD) doubles in size to dwarf even that of London’s famed Canary Wharf financial district.

In particular, Tanjong Pagar has been identified for rejuvenation, which will see new hotels, and commercial and residential sites being developed as the district becomes the ‘Southern Gateway’ to the city centre.

Plans for a bigger, bolder city centre – which will offer more lifestyle, business and leisure options – were released by Singapore’s urban planners under the latest draft Masterplan 2008 yesterday.

Marina Bay will remain the mainstay of supply for Singapore’s growing demand for office space. At 129ha and offering 2.82 millionsqm of office space, it will be the equivalent of Hong Kong Central, the city’s main business district, said the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA).

While Marina Bay and the city centre will be the key commercial districts to meet demand, new ‘commercial nodes’ outside the CBD will offer attractive alternatives to businesses, said National Development Minister Mah Bow Tan yesterday at the launch.

This includes the Beach Road/Ophir-Rochor district, which will undergo a makeover previously announced by URA to become the ‘Northern Gateway’ to the city. Already under way is the development of the eco-friendly South Beach project designed by world-renowned British architect Norman Foster and his partners.

The development includes two towers of up to 45 storeys high, linked to the conserved military buildings of the old Beach Road camp. There will also be premium office space, two luxury hotels offering up to 700 rooms, service apartments and shops on the 3.5ha site.

In Tanjong Pagar, several sites have been sold in the past year for the development of new offices, hotel rooms and high-rise residential projects such as Pinnacle@Duxton and the Icon.

All this and more will further enhance the vibrancy and activities of the Tanjong Pagar commercial district, said URA.

In the broader central region, another 130,900 homes have also been planned, adding to the existing 335,400 units in the area.

These include new abodes in established towns Queenstown, Toa Payoh and Kallang. The proliferation of homes located close to commercial centres is also part of the strategy to ‘reduce commuting by bringing jobs closer to home’, said Mr Mah.

Public infrastructure, especially in transport, will be enhanced in the area, with the new Downtown and Thomson MRT lines and the Marina Coastal Expressway serving the expanded city centre.

Mr Danny Yeo, deputy managing director of property consultancy Knight Frank, said the latest plans will help alleviate some of the city’s traffic problems.

‘The increased residential component will also inject a lot more nightlife, and bring people closer to towns, reducing the need for travelling,’ said Mr Yeo.

Source : Straits Times – 24 May 2008


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