The Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA)’s plans to refurbish and enliven neighbourhoods throughout the island spells good news for buyers who are looking for convenient, well-equipped homes that will also double as worthwhile investments decades down the road.
In this article, we’ll look at five up-and-coming HDB neighbourhoods and what future residents can expect in those estates:
- To be within close proximity of niche facilities and business districts specific to your lifestyle
- Enjoy sustained appreciation of your home’s value as new developments spring up in their surrounding vicinity
1. Farrer Park: Sporting complex drives resale value
A 10-hectare brownfield site at Farrer Park (equivalent to 19 football fields) is expected to boast 1,600 new HDB flats, which will be launched over the next three years. Authorities have also unveiled plans to redevelop landmark sporting facilities in the neighbourhood which will be supported by modern developments.
Farrer Park Boxing Gym, the poster child for the neighbourhood’s rich sporting history, will be transformed into a multi-purpose community sporting space. The refurbished sports complex will host multiple spaces for a wider variety of sports while retaining the architectural features of the former boxing tournament venue.
The boxing gym will be accompanied by a 1.2 hectare central space for green, multi-generational playgrounds and fitness corners, as well as jogging tracks circling the neighbourhood. As local residents lamented the demolition of the iconic Farrer Park Swimming Complex, developers promised to include an indoor swimming pool into the multi-purpose sporting space.
The joint announcement made by HDB, Sport Singapore (SportSG) and URA on April 25 2022 has also revived interest in condos along the nearby District 8, which saw new launch Piccadilly Grand attract swathes of more than 5,000 interested buyers, pushing prices beyond the $2,000 psf threshold.
Response amongst home owners along Dorset Road and Race Course Road, who own properties with lease dates starting in 1976 and 1986 respectively, has also been largely positive as they look towards turning larger profits on resale. Conveniently sandwiched between Farrer Park and Little India MRT stations, the new sports-centric neighbourhood will no doubt attract enthusiasts and sports players islandwide.
Residents will also gain access to essential goods and services at Mustafa Centre and City Square Mall, both of which lie within a walking distance of less than five minutes from the estate complex. Mustafa Centre, in particular, operates round the clock and offers clothes, souvenirs and groceries at affordable prices. Shoppers who are looking for a good bargain will be more than likely to find what they need here.
2. Jurong: Accessibility to manufacturing sites and eco-friendly living
They say that Jurong is fast becoming the new CBD, and that phrase is ringing truer as the days go by. URA released their transformation blueprint for Singapore’s largest manufacturing hub, that comprises Jurong Innovation District (JID), Jurong Lake District (JLD) and Tuas Port.
At 360-hectares, the JLD will be Singapore’s second largest business district complete with lakeside walkways, interlacing green spaces and direct connections to the Central Business District and even Changi Airport (yes, you heard that right!).
Six Jurong Region Line MRT stations are expected to run across the JID by 2029, ferrying research and development employees to-and-fro Nanyang Technological University’s laboratories and manufacturing sites. Finally, Tuas Port may soon rid itself of its ‘ulu’ reputation, as the production factory site is expected to be served with six railway lines come 2035.
Rounding up Jurong’s developments is Tengah Park District, one of Singapore’s newest housing towns in the West. The neighbourhood is already served by the major highways of Pan-Island Expressway (PIE) and Kranji Expressway (KJE). Starting from 2027, residents will enjoy even greater connectivity as Phase 1 of the Jurong Regional Line begins operations, which will be expanded in subsequent years and eventually accompanied by the Cross Island Line in 2030.
42,000 new homes are slated for development across five distinct housing districts (Plantation, Park, Garden, Brickland and Forest Hill) that are estimated to be the size of the Bishan estate. A 100m wide and 5km long Forest Corridor will bridge Tengah to the larger ecological paths within the Western Water Catchment and Central Catchment Area. 3,000 square metres of urban community farming space have also been highlighted as key features of the town, allowing residents to be ‘At Home with Nature’.
The town infrastructure will be supported by smart technology to optimise energy consumption. Tengah Park District, in particular, will set the standard for smart and sustainable living. Specially designed to be car-lite the town centre space will be maximised for recreation and retail as traffic flows beneath ground level.
Those interested in executive condos can look forward to a 99-year leasehold development by Taurus Properties SG on Tengah Garden Walk. The developer snagged the land parcel on June 3 2021 for the price of $400,318,000, which translates to $603 per square foot per plot ratio (psf prr). The land is expected to yield about 615 units. Property analysts had initially quoted a price range $1,190 to $1,250 psf, although recent events suggest that the final prices will most likely be higher.
3. Mount Pleasant: Affordable housing on heritage site
33-hectares comprising the Old Police Academy, as well as a small portion of the Singapore Polo Club, will be repurposed to build 5,000 HDB flats for the upcoming Mount Pleasant estate to meet the surging demand for public housing.
Bounded by Thomson Road and the PIE, residents will also gain quick access to the Thomson-East Coast Line via Mount Pleasant MRT, which will commence operation in tandem with completion of the housing development within 2022. Its near-central location makes Mount Pleasant ideal for buyers who wish to live in accessible spaces that still grant peace and tranquillity while also being lighter on the wallet.
After HDB, URA & the Singapore Land Authority (SLA) conducted an extensive heritage and environmental impact study involving community stakeholders, it was decided that the former police academy buildings would be preserved in honour of the site’s history. Standout features such as the former parade ground will be refurbished to retain the integrity of the former police academy while simultaneously acting as a bridge between the old and the new. In addition, open and green community spaces will be weaved into the neighbourhood to liven the atmosphere and promote healthy living.
National Development Minister Desmond Lee had previously announced that the first Build-To-Order (BTO) project in the area would be launched by 2026. Property watchers have pegged future BTO launch prices to the nearby Toa Payoh, where four-room flat prices rose above $600,000 in 2021. The four-room units at Bidadari, which were released in February 2021, fetched a more affordable price of about $460,000. It remains to be seen whether five-room BTO flats will be included at Mount Pleasant, although \analysts interviewed by The Straits Times are not too optimistic given the fact that five-room HDB flats are typically absent in mature estates.
4. Alexandra Road: Possible PLH on non-prime district
About 1,500 HDB flats are scheduled for construction on a site in Alexandra. The 3.7-hectare site is encircled by Alexandra Road, Prince Charles Crescent and Alexandra Canal. The government has gazetted the entire site for acquisition, including the 0.23 hectares currently owned by Alexandra Post Office and Singpost.
While specific details about the development have yet to be unveiled, it is likely that authorities wish to make more efficient use of the space with the re-acquisition, given the fact that the site was previously occupied by low-rise public rental flats.
According to the Business Times, property analysts are debating whether or not the site will fall under the Prime Location Public Housing (PLH) scheme, which would grant buyers additional subsidies compared to BTOs while also doubling the Minimum Occupation Period to 10 years. While Alexandra Road lies outside the prime district, the area’s high rent environment will no doubt balloon further as empty land in the vicinity is developed. Some analysts say that the high prices could prompt authorities to place units at Alexandra under the PLH scheme in an effort to cool prices.
Future residents can expect to live within 400m of Redhill MRT station, which will grant them quick access to the East-West Line. Cyclists and joggers will also be delighted to know that the site is located along Alexandra Park Connector.
5. Dunman Road: The next mega residential project to look out for
Last but not least, a mega residential site on Dunman Road is expected to draw in sky-high bids of more than $1 billion since it has been put on sale for public tender on March 14 2022. Tender will close at 12pm, June 2 2022. URA expects the site to yield approximately 1,040 residential units across the 25.234.3 square metre plot.
The fact that mega projects have performed well over the past few years is not lost on developers: Treasure at Tampines sold out more than 50% of units within a week of its launch and Normanton Park, the biggest launch in 2021, also wound up as the top selling new launch of the year. Experts predict that things will be no different this time around, especially since developers will be looking to replenish their land banks given the limited supply of new launches in the vicinity. While developers are unlikely to be deterred by the sheer scope of the project, it will also not be a surprise to see them forming joint partnerships in order to lower their investment risk.
Developers will hope to capitalise on the site’s selling points, such as its proximity to Dakota MRT station as well as the schools of Chung Cheng High School (Main), Broadrick Secondary School and Tanjong Katong Girls’ School. Connectivity to Marina Reservoir, Gardens by the Bay via the nearby Geylang Park Connector is also expected to be a point of attraction for future buyers.
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