Good property design may help bridge social divide

Muneerah 26 Feb 2015

Good property design may help bridge social divide

Building more HDB flats on prime land cannot bridge the gap between the rich and the poor, according to Social and Family Development Minister Chan Chun Sing and reported in the media.

Mr Chan made the statement in response to a query on whether the government would consider building HDB flats on prime land in order to increase social interaction among the rich and the poor.

Although the government may build such flats, he noted real social mixing goes beyond buildings as it involves the willingness of the people to interact as well as foster strong community ties.

It is more about the successful people reaching out to the poor and “giving their time, talent, treasures”, he added.

Nonetheless, architects and property developers could play an important role in fostering social interaction.

Speaking at the inaugural Real Estate Developers’ Association of Singapore (REDAS) mentorship programme for students yesterday (pictured), Mr Chan told the 50 students from the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and National University of Singapore (NUS) good design can help guard against the worst of Singaporeans’ self-preserving nature, also known as the “not in my backyard syndrome”.

“As architects and real estate developers… (we) can mitigate and minimise the syndrome, if we design according to the needs of the community or emerging community, if we have a good feel of the needs,” he said.

“As you develop your skills… may you consider carefully how living spaces are designed, and be architects of communities,” Mr Chan addressed the students.

Image source: Social and Family Development  Minister Chan Chun Sing’s Facebook page


Muneerah Bee, Senior Journalist at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact her about this or other stories email



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