The Singapore government, through the URA, made available two Reserve List residential development sites for application today. These are the last two reserve list sites to be made available in the Government Land Sale (GLS) programme of 2021. Real estate developers who are interested to buy either of these land parcels can apply to the government to release it for sale by tender.
The two land parcels are located next to each other at Pine Grove, fronting the Ulu Pandan Road.
Below are the details of the land parcels.
Table 1 | GLS Reserve List sites at Pine Grove (Parcel A & B)
City fringe location with suburban feel
The Ulu Pandan area may give some people the impression that it is located quite far from the city area. However, the two land parcels at Pine Grove are actually located in the Rest of Central Region (RCR), which is also known as the city-fringe areas. They are situated in District 21, within the Bukit Timah planning area, which would qualify them to be within the RCR.
Although these two Pine Grove sites are in the RCR, it would take about 40 to 50 minutes to travel by public transportation to the Central Business District (CBD). One could take a bus from Pine Grove to either Clementi MRT Station or Dover MRT Station to take the train to the CBD. The 40 to 50 minutes travelling time would be about the same duration for commuting from some parts of the suburban Outside Central Region (OCR) to the CBD.
Figure 1 | Location map of GLS sites at Pine Grove (Parcel A & B)
Big RCR residential GLS sites are uncommon
This year, the government would launch 8 residential development sites for sale by tender, including two land parcels for the development of Executive Condominiums. Among these 8 land parcels, three of them are located in the Rest of Central Region (RCR)
Table 2 | Confirmed List GLS land parcels in RCR launched in 2021
Only one of these three RCR land parcels, namely the site at Jalan Tembusu, could be developed into a large condominium project of more than 500 units. Therefore, it is not often that the government would offer large residential land parcels in the RCR for sale.
Chances of these Reserve List sites triggered for sale
Despite the scarcity of large city-fringe residential land parcels offered for sale, real estate developers may prefer other GLS sites over these two plots at Pine Grove. Hence, these two sites may not be triggered for tender any time soon. One of the reasons is the large size of these two sites at Pine Grove. The sweet spot for most developers would be residential sites that can be developed into condominium projects with 200 to 500 units each. Property developments of such sizes would be big enough for the developer to enjoy some economies of scale, but still small enough for the developer to manage the risk of sudden unexpected changes in market conditions or a new round of government intervention.
Figure 2 | Aerial views of the two GLS sites at Pine Grove (Parcel A & B)
Capping the maximum number of units to be built
An unusual condition attached to the development of these land parcels is that the maximum number of housing units that can be built on each of the sites are capped at 520 units for Parcel A and 565 units for Parcel B. This is to manage the potential traffic volume from the increase in the population when the new residential developments on these two sites are eventually completed in the future.
This regulation could also be an effective way to encourage developers to build more family-sized units, such as those with at least 3 bedrooms each. After all, Pine Grove is an established residential area near the Clementi HDB housing estate. The future condominium development at Pine Grove could cater to the HDB upgraders’ housing demand. Most HDB upgraders with children would prefer housing units with at least 3 bedrooms. Take a look also at Private residential trend update 4Q 2021.
Source: By ERA Research