Well-integrated, accessible, holistic design

By
/ EdgeProp Singapore
|
October 30, 2020 6:00 AM SGT
SINGAPORE (EDGEPROP) - As a nexus for residents and the community, well-designed integrated developments inspire a sense of exclusivity among residents while being an inclusive part of the wider community, says Lee Nai Jia, deputy director of the Institute of Real Estate and Urban Studies at the National University of Singapore.
Lee is one of the judges for the EdgeProp Excellence Awards, which conferred this year’s Mixed-Use Development Excellence Award on North Park Residences. The development also took home the Top Development Award for a completed residential development in a non-Central region, as well as the Landscape Excellence Award.

Anchor development for Yishun

The 920-unit North Park Residences is the residential component of North Point City, a suburban integrated development in Yishun by Frasers Property. The project is one of the largest integrated suburban developments in Singapore, and comprises an integrated transport hub, two retail wings, a community centre, a public library, a town plaza, and a community garden.
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The integrated development is part of the HDB’s “Remaking Our Heartland” rejuvenation plan for the Yishun area, and the mixed-use project is beside Yishun MRT Station on the North-South Line and close to community amenities including Khoo Teck Puat Hospital, Yishun Community Hospital, and the Nee Soon Sports Centre.
North Point City - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
North Point City features an integrated transport hub, a community centre, a retail mall, and the North Park Residences condominium. (Picture: Samuel Isaac Chua/The Edge Singapore)
The judges commended the mixed-use development for its well-planned integration of the various components. North Point City was completed in stages with the retail sections opening in December 2017, North Park Residences in October 2018, and the integrated transport hub in March 2019.
“North Point City is our vision of a mixed-use development within Yishun that more closely integrates the MRT station and retail sections into the wider community,” says Frasers Property. Within the development, residential lobbies are connected to the bus interchange and retail mall, and a link bridge connects the town centre zone to the town square and town garden areas.
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Pedestrian traffic is also designed to travel seamlessly through the mall and transport hub via underground links and an overhead pedestrian bridge. In total, there are six levels of connection from the basement to the fourth floor of the retail mall and transport hub.
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North Park Residences also scored well in terms of its high degree of community involvement throughout the project. This includes the town plaza, the community centre, and various community gardens. The judges noted that these green social spaces are important placemaking points throughout the development, and visually connect the entire project.

Green spaces for residents and the community

North Park Residences was praised for its sense of place and integration between residential areas and the biophilic landscape. The developer, which was inspired by the neighbouring Yishun Town Garden, says: “We decided to extend the greenery from the park around our entire development site, integrating greenery with the design of the facade.”
mixed-use development - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
The mixed-use development scored highly in terms of its excellent accessibility through each component. (Picture: Frasers Property)
For example, greenery and vegetation line the side of the development facing Yishun Avenue 2, and vertical greenery covers the community centre and multi-storey carpark, acting as a screen against noise and pollution. Green corridors throughout the development extend to the neighbourhood park connector network, increasing the available green spaces for residents and the community.
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The judges took into consideration the development’s overall green plot ratio of 4.37 which exceeded its regulatory target of 4.0 for the site. They noted that the abundant greenery and vegetation throughout the site help absorb urban heat and improve ventilation.
For the residences, the landscape design features a park with three gardens and 10 coves throughout the landscape deck. The condo sits on a 442,234 sq ft site and the generous space means that all 12 residential blocks have a north-south orientation and feature a minimum building setback of 28m.
The wide setback spaces were utilised to create 10 landscaped courtyards. The entire area is grouped into three distinctive landscape zones, namely the Waterfall Garden, Fountain Garden, and Springwater Garden. The landscape is also brought upwards and residential blocks feature sky gardens that carry on the vertical greenery from the street level.
North Park Residences - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
North Park Residences incorporates greenery and biophilic design to enhance wellness and green views for all residents. (Picture: Frasers Property)
“Well-planned exteriors make a lot of difference in enhancing the overall liveability of residential developments, and with that in mind, the landscape design for residential developments becomes very important,” says Yvonne Tan, director of DP Green, the landscape and arboriculture consultancy arm of homegrown architectural practice DP Group.
Tan, who is also on the awards panel of judges this year, adds that excellent landscape design considers all the spaces available, focusing on a holistic approach that includes the needs of all residents rather than having just a few pockets of green spaces.
This is evident throughout North Park Residences at places such as its clubhouse which features trees and palms on its roof, enhancing the greenery and adding to the overall landscape view. Reading lounges beside the 50m pool also feature similar greenery on their rooftops.

Top development

On top of being a well-planned mixed-use development and having a focus on wellness and biophilic design throughout the residential development, North Park Residences features a variety of homes that cater to different profiles. Five different living concepts can be found, and unit types range from studios of 431 sq ft to five-bedroom units of 1,432 sq ft.
North Park Residences - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
North Park Residences comprises units that range from studios of 431 sq ft to five-bedroom apartments of 1,432 sq ft. (Picture: Samuel Isaac Chua/The Edge Singapore)
Studio units are inspired by hotel concept designs and come with a spacious studio layout; two-bedroom units of 635 sq ft are based on an inter-generational home concept and feature a dual-key approach for some units. Larger units prominently feature the verdant landscape deck, such as the three-bedroom units from 829 sq ft in which all the bedrooms face the garden spaces or the pool. Four-bedroom units from 1,098 sq ft each come with a living room balcony and direct access to the kitchen, while the five-bedroom units of 1,432 sq ft feature a 6m balcony, and wet and dry kitchens.
As a mixed-use development, North Park Residences boasts well-integrated and accessible components, and the entire development contributes to the surrounding community. Frasers Property also prioritised well-integrated landscape and biophilic design to enhance the liveability and attractiveness of the whole project.
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