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4 nostalgia-inducing en bloc exercises, Money News

As Singapore is a forward-thinking city, the only constant you can count on is its ever-changing, ever-evolving facade. This city is moving in an incessant flow of facelifts, with many developers issuing tenders en bloc for older developments.

There were 31 en-bloc deals on the real estate market in 2017 and 36 deals in 2018. Many iconic buildings that we grew up with no longer exist and only leave behind images and memories that one can look back on with pleasure.

With the government’s focus on rapid city development and improvement, few buildings are spared this dynamic wave.

The palisades en bloc

One such notable landmark is a three-decade-old condominium on Pasir Panjang Road. This apartment belies a unique secret – a unique funicular in Singapore. The elevator travels sideways instead of vertically and opens on both sides to serve residents from their own entrance to their apartments.

Like many others before, the residents agreed to erect the building en bloc. This means the unique elevator will be lost along with the demolition of the entire condominium to make way for new development.

We take a look back at some notable landmarks that have been transformed into new developments.

1. Before: Pearl Bank Apartments

After four tries, the iconic horseshoe-shaped building known as Pearl Bank Apartments was sold to CapitaLand in a joint sale of $ 728 million in 2018. That sale price equates to a land price of approximately $ 1,515 per square foot per gross floor area.

Conveniently located in the central region of Singapore near the Outram Park MRT station, the 37-story landmark building is being converted into a residential high-rise with around 800 units.

ALSO READ: Thomson View and Ampas Apartment: A Story of 2 Tries in One Lot

The residents of the Pearl Bank Apartments were initially interested in preserving the multilayer development due to their history and design. However, after a more in-depth analysis of the building’s structure, it was ultimately found to be too costly and unprofitable.

Residential owners of 1,323 m² to 3,993 m² are expected to receive between $ 1.8 million and $ 4.9 million from the bulk tender. Commercial unit owners receive between $ 1.2 million and $ 46.9 million for units between 700 sq ft and 5,630 sq ft.

After: A pearl bank

In place of the Pearl Bank Apartments, a new 39-storey residential complex with 774 residential units was built. On the opening day of One Pearl Bank in July 2019, thousands of potential buyers flocked to the One Pearl Bank sales gallery.

It was a popular introduction as 80 percent of the 200 units released were purchased on the first weekend. Among them were former residents who wanted to return to their old homes.

The new building pays homage to the former iconic C-shape of the Pearl Bank Apartments with two curved towers that are connected on the roof by sky bridges.

Prices start at $ 970,000 for a 431 square meter studio apartment to at least $ 3.5 million for a 1,432 square meter four-bed unit. One Pearl Bank’s average price is $ 2,400 per square foot – almost double the average per square foot of the old Pearl Bank apartments.

At 178 m above sea level, the One Pearl Bank will be the tallest building in the Outram Road area. The project is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2023.

Here are seven interesting things you should know about One Pearl Bank.

2. Before: Liang Court

Built in the early 1980s, Liang Court was a shopping mall in bustling Clarke Quay on the Singapore River. The iconic 25-story brown twin towers were part of a mixed-use complex that included Novotel Clarke Quay and Somerset Liang Court Residences.

The complex was primarily aimed at the Japanese expatriates and the Singapore community, with many Japanese retail options such as Daimaru Department Store, Kinokuniya Bookstore, and Meidi-Ya Supermarket.

After a few years of declining business, the mall was finally sold to CapitaLand and City Developments Limited (CDL) in March 2019. It was demolished in August 2021 and went out without a fuss as the pandemic thinned the crowd.

After: Canninghill Piers

Canninghill Piers breathed new life into the area, replacing Liang Court with a mixed development of residential and commercial properties due to be built by 2024.

The new property with 696 residential units in two residential towers is connected to Fort Canning Park by a footbridge. The commercial component will be seamlessly connected to Clarke Quay, giving future residents endless F&B and retail options right on their doorstep.


With a double facade, the future residents of the Canninghill Piers can enjoy a picturesque view of the Singapore River or Fort Canning Hill.

The launch weekend on November 21, 2021 was an extremely successful one. 538 units were sold at an average retail price of $ 3,000 per square foot for a total sales value of over $ 1.18 billion. The project’s only 8,956 square meter penthouse on the 48th floor was also purchased for $ 48 million ($ 5,360 psf).

As part of URA’s 2019 master plan, the promenade next to the property will also be rejuvenated. This includes improving pedestrian accessibility and pedestrian frequency near the Singapore River. The new integrated development has excellent connectivity as it will be connected directly underground to the Fort Canning MRT station.

Here are Three Things You Should Know About New Canninghill Piers Condominium.

3. Before: Normanton Park

Originally built by HDB in the 1970s as affordable housing for SAF military personnel, Normanton Park was privatized in 1993 and had a successful en bloc in 2017.

The original apartment complex housed 488 units in 13 blocks with a total floor area of ​​61,408.9 m² (660,999.9 sq ft).

Normanton Park is just off the Ayer Rajah Expressway and is just a stone’s throw from prestigious educational institutions, including the Anglo-Chinese School (Independent), Fairfield Methodist Elementary and Secondary Schools, and the National University of Singapore.

The en bloc exercise received 87.3 percent approval from owners in just over two months and was sold to Kingsford Huray Development for $ 830.1 million. This was the highest land price for a 99-year lease this year.

Each owner would have received a sum between $ 1.68 million and $ 1.86 million for every successful sale.

After: Normanton Park Condo

The new Normanton Park, which will be TOP in December 2023, will be converted into a luxury condominium with 1862 units spread across nine towers, including 22 unique terraced villa units.

The development will also include seven commercial shop units and even a restaurant, all on the premises for the convenience of residents. Nature lovers can relax from the hustle and bustle of city life as the apartment is seamlessly integrated

It was a popular launch that sold nearly a third of all units on day one. Prices start at $ 974,000 for a one-bedroom unit and go up to $ 2,975,000 for a five-bed room.

4. In progress: Golden Mile Complex

This unique landmark was built almost half a century ago in the 1970s and is iconic for its brutalist architectural style. It is evident in the building equipment, which includes a stepped terrace, sloping beams and staggered stairs. It is also among the first in terms of a mixed use development that houses a combination of offices, shops and apartments in one building.


Best known for its Mookata restaurants and Thai nightclubs, the Golden Mile Complex is the favorite hangout for Thai nationals living in Singapore. Some have even called it “Little Thailand”.

Real estate transactions within the complex are understandably extremely rare as there are only 68 residential units with 411 retail units and 226 office space.

Although it was preserved in October 2021, it was re-offered for joint sale at the same minimum price of $ 800 million. No wonder, as the complex is in a prime location in District 7 and only 10 minutes from the Central Business District and Orchard Road.

Without a doubt, the top priority of the government in choosing between conservation or rehabilitation is to ensure the country’s steady growth. SERS and en bloc exercises are necessary to achieve just that.

This means more older buildings may be available for sale in the future, including iconic landmarks like the ones mentioned above.

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