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Ongoing decentralisation of the CBD to Jurong

Ongoing decentralisation of the CBD to Jurong

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SINGAPORE — Based on Tengah’s key novelty features of being a “forest town” and its projected car-free town centre, property analysts told TODAY that they expect to see a very healthy demand for homes there because of its new town-planning concepts, but the estate would hold its strongest appeal to those who already live and work in the western region.

The new Housing and Development Board (HDB) estate is part of the Government’s efforts to transform the west as a regional district, and is near developments such as the Jurong Lake District, slated to be Singapore’s second Central Business District (CBD), where the future Singapore-Kuala Lumpur high-speed rail terminal will be.

The first batch of HDB flats is expected to be launched from 2018 and the town — the size of Bishan and set to be fully developed over 20 years — would have 42,000 new homes. Upcoming executive condo launches include Hundred Palms EC, Anchorvale Lane EC,  while existing ones include Parc Life , Signature at Yishun,  Brownstone EC, Visionaire EC, Inz Residence, The Criterion EC and Northwave EC , The Terrace EC,  The Vales EC, Sol Acres EC and The  Bellewoods EC. Hundred Palms Residences details and Hundred Palms EC show flat will be available shortly.

Propnex Realty’s chief executive Ismail Gafoor said that one group most likely to want to live there would be the newly married, the younger generation who have grown up in the area who are tech-savvy and who want to live near their parents.

ERA Realty Network’s key executive officer Eugene Lim shared similar views, saying that this group would appreciate it more than those who live farther in eastern Singapore. He added that it would be interesting to see how HDB works in smart features in its planning.

On the car-free town centre, Mr Alan Cheong, research head at Savills Singapore, said that people would be able to mingle better with “no barrier, no roads” and he wanted to see how architects would plan the layout of shops and commercial zones to enhance the experience of the town.

Prices of Tengah flats should be comparable to suburban new towns such as Punggol, the analysts said. Mr Ismail added that it was likely that Tengah flats would be “at least 20 per cent cheaper” than those in the Bidadari area, given that the latter had a more central location.

The analysts pointed out that Tengah, which lies at the borders of Choa Chu Kang, Bukit Batok and Jurong West, is still a little out-of-the-way for some, and its success in drawing buyers from non-neighbouring estates would also depend on how well the developments pan out in Jurong Innovation District and Jurong Lake District.

Ms Caroline Koh, manager (research and consultancy) at Suntec Real Estate Consultants, said that while the decentralisation of the CBD to Jurong is ongoing, it would “not be easy to convince someone living nearer downtown to move to Tengah”, especially if their workplace is in the current CBD. Mr Cheong said that relocating the workforce from the CBD would also be difficult “unless you build a new MRT line that is an express ride bypassing existing lines, from major employment nodes in the current CBD to Tengah”.

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