The Ministry of National Development is studying how HDB flat designs can support developments in the future of work, including trends that may have been accelerated by COVID-19, such as telecommuting. 

With trends such as telecommuting accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ministry of National Development (MND) is studying on how HDB flat designs can support developments in the future of work, said MND in a written reply to Parliament on 4 September

It was responding to MP Chong Kee Hiong query on whether the pandemic has an impact on the future designs of HDB flats, like the provision for spaces to work from home.

“Today, broadband for Wi-Fi ready connections is already available in all public housing flats, facilitating working and studying from home,” said MND.

The ministry explained that HDB flats have been designed to provide a living environment that is comfortable and functional.

The bedrooms, for instance, feature large windows to optimise natural ventilation and lighting, while kitchens are designed “to be open to increase the sense of spaciousness within the flat”.

The columns in new flats, on the other hand, have been “pushed to the edges wherever possible”, providing homeowners more flexibility to reconfigure spaces according to their needs.

The ministry noted that these design principles “came in useful during the circuit breaker when residents had to work from home and students had to undergo home-based learning”.

Beyond flats, the ministry shared that HDB has also introduced more greenery as well as play and fitness equipment over the years to enhance the living environment of precincts and neighbourhoods.

Recommended article: 4 Green Features in HDB Towns That Are Helping Save the World! 

“These extended living spaces give our flat dwellers a respite from the confines of their homes while seeking to encourage a healthy lifestyle. Commercial amenities such as supermarkets and eating houses have also been planned to be within easy walking distance from homes,” it said.

Meanwhile, MND revealed that ‘smart-enabled’ homes are also being trialled at Tengah and Punggol Northshore to enable residents to adopt more smart applications.

“If feasible, we will incorporate these features into future designs,” it said.

“We will also continue to gather views and ideas to improve the design of public housing to better meet residents’ needs, as part of the Emerging Stronger Conversations.”

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Victor Kang, Digital Content Specialist at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact him about this or other stories, email