M C I ( P ) 1 1 8 / 0 8 / 2 0 1 7 | VOLUME 9 NUMBER 1 | 2018 SINGAPORE | W W W . D P A . C O M . S G
REVITALISING PAYA LEBAR
INS ight URBAN REGENERATION
Pers o n
BEHIND THE SCENES OF THE PAYA LEBAR TRANSFORMATION
a new chapter
32 19 07
01 LESLEY LIM 02 TEOH HAI PIN 03 TI LIAN SENG 04 FRANCIS LEE, CHAIRMAN 05 ANGELENE CHAN, CEO 06 CHAN SUI HIM, SENIOR DIRECTOR 07 DADI SURYA 08 WU TZU CHIANG 09 CHIN THOE CHONG 10 LEE SIAT KIAT 11 TOH SZE CHONG 12 MIKE LIM 13 MAY CHAN 14 TANIA WEE 15 JEREMY TAN 16 TOH LI CHUIN 17 TONG BIN SIN 18 NG SAN SON 19 CHAN HUI MIN 20 TAN CHEE KIANG 21 SUNEETH CHANGAROTH 22 VIKAS M GORE 23 SEAH CHEE HUANG 24 CHUA ZI JUN 25 TAN JIANN WOEI 26 LOH HAI YEW 27 TAN CHEE YONG 28 RIDA SOBANA 29 LEE WAI FONG 30 DAVID LIAUW 31 NIEW PEY RAN 32 WU ZHI WEI
2017 was a significant year for DP. We celebrated our 50th anniversary, reflected on our journey and mapped our future. Building on our already firm foundation, our next chapter must be brighter and better. Two things remain close to my heart: Design and People. Evolving with the times and the needs of our industry, we have grown into an integrated design practice and expanded our reach beyond regional borders. We are now aiming for even higher design and delivery benchmarks that are transformative and world-class. One Global Studio – our strategic network of offices and specialist services – provides us with the flexibility to respond effectively and efficiently to beat stiff competition. And our people are the muscles to take us to greater heights.
To do this, DP believes in grooming young talents so that we can build on the success of the earlier generations to achieve our longterm vision. Succession planning has always been a vital strategy for us. This year, the Board of Directors has handpicked 13 DPians to be directors and promoted another 147. These 13 will take on a bigger role in writing DP’s new chapter; while the 147 have been identified as high-potential talents to be groomed for the future. Please join me in congratulating them on their promotion. Improving the lives of the people we design for is as equally important to us as taking care of the people we work with. It has always been DP’s aspiration to craft delightful spaces that benefit the community and raise the quality of life.
Beyond the design of buildings, we have been privileged to shape the character of urbanscapes in Singapore, including Orchard Road and Marina Bay; the latest is Paya Lebar Central. In this issue of Design in Print we share the design ideas behind Paya Lebar Square, SingPost Centre and Paya Lebar Quarter – projects that are transforming the precinct into a lively destination with thriving retail and businesses, and attractive public spaces. As we step deeper into 2018, we continue to give our best towards a successful, happy and rewarding year with every DPian, every client and every partner. Angelene Chan CEO | Architect
c on ten ts 05 U P D A T E S DP Architects Annual Promotion
06-09 B R I E F
01 8 Saint Thomas 02 Collins Boulevard 03 Yulong Financial Centre 04 Bhubaneswar Residential Project 05 ION Sky 06 East Coast Integrated Depot 07 Sun Tower
10-21 D E P T H
Revitalising Paya Lebar Designed for the digital age Building vibrancy A new business hub
22-23 I N s i g h t Urban Regeneration
23 I N D U S T R Y 01 DPA is world no. 8 02 SMU CEO Talks 03 MIPNB International Conference
24-29 P E R S O N
Behind the Scenes of the Paya Lebar Transformation
D e si g n
P r i n t
EDITOR IN CHIEF Angelene Chan | CONTENT Toh Bee Ping, Belle Chung, Chia Zhao Hui, Vanessa Lim, Josy Koh, Luenne Choa GRAPHICS Loh Yew Cheng, Lee Hui Yee | PHOTOGRAPHER Bai Jiwen, Pocholo Mauricio | CONTRIBUTOR Jackie Poh
THE L ATEST HAPPENINGS IN DP |
D P A R C H I T E CT S ' A N N UA L P R O M O T I O N The Board of Directors is pleased to announce the promotion of 13 DPians to directors. Chosen for their contribution to DP Architects and promise of professional accomplishments, the 13 will take on management responsibilities in addition to leading projects. Consistent with DP’s focus on expanding its international reach, six of the new directors oversee the DP group’s global operations in China, Indochina and Indonesia. Introducing younger, creative blood to the senior management is part of the firm’s succession planning; with an average age of 45, the 13 brings new vitality as the practice takes its first step into the next 50 years. The Board has also announced 147 promotions at its annual promotion, effective from 1 January 2018.
DP ARCHITECTS Director Chua Zi Jun David Liauw Lee Siat Kiat Lee Wai Fong Loh Hai Yew Ng San Son Niew Pey Ran Rida Sobana Tan Chee Yong Tan Jiann Woei Tania Wee Toh Li Chuin Wu Zhi Wei
Senior Associate Director Ang Guo Zi Foo Chai Yee Goh Soh Mui Jacqueline Pong Joseph Ng Swee Hong Senior Associate Director, Contracts Elizabeth Lee Senior Associate Director, Special Projects Liz Tan Senior Associate Director, Technical Chow Kok Pan Marimuthu Nagapandi Pinson Lim Associate Director Alvin Liau Firman Saleh Gregory Cha Fong Kathy Lok Lionel Leow Michelle Lim Shane Tan Simeon Lim
Assistant Head, Design Intelligence Margaret Lau Associate Director, Special Projects Victoria Yoong Associate Director, Technical Roslinah Ahmad Senior Associate Bobby Gamao Elim Lau Ephraim Baluyot Eugene Dizon Goh Chee Haw Gwee Tong Mui Harvey Lukman Ho Wai Kit Joe Krentz Kwong Wan Huay Kyle Fulton Lee Kar Fung Low Chin Win Low Si Ni Nassar Zain Ng Wei Qi See Phei Khee Sharon Hee Tristan Padong Wayne Lim Yii Yeong Ginn Senior Associate, Contracts Julia Gwee Michael Chim Deputy Head, Design Intelligence Behzad Meskini Senior Manager, Design Intelligence Vignesh Kaushik
Associate Director, Contracts Leong Peck Kay
Senior Manager, Model Maker Wu Yan
Associate Director, Contracts and Corporate Affairs Kala Seevaratnam
Senior Associate, Projects Charles Chan
Senior Associate, Technical Rolando Bernardo Sebastian Tong Wong Shan Shan Associate Adhiguna Nurpasa Alan Lee Cheang Pooi San Chio Wen Tian Chua Chia Wei Dora Er Emydiati Agos Harriet Yeo Hiu Pui Ser Hu Yongjia Jade Dhanoputri Jazelle Ang Jenabi Ling Laura Perez Lee Wey Jiun Lemuel Hernandez Lew Chin Kwan Lu Jiaping Ning Xian Lin Ong Jun Yi Ong Wee Jin Rense Koo Richard Francisco Rosa Mateo Sean Fernandes Stephanie Lie Theodora Janenita Wang Bin Wendy Ang Wu Yumei Yan Son Zic Chen Associate, Contracts Sharifah Nurul Huda Assistant Manager, Model Maker Yvonne Heng Associate, Projects Tan Chun Keong Associate, Technical Albert Maniangap Carlos Lucas Janet Jao
Jennifer Nacional Leo Bucasas Ng Bee Chen Refano Puspita Ryan Dayao
DP ARCHITECTS CHINA Associate Chen Meng Ru Jin Xin Ma Jia Tan Chee Ping
Associate, Technical Wu Rui Feng
DP ARCHITECTS INDIA Associate Director Pramod Gangolli Senior Associate Roopa G Yashaswini Apte Associate Ashwin Kulkarni
DP ARCHITECTS MALAYSIA Associate Director William Chua
Associate Director, Technical Krisnaraj Muthukumar Senior Associate Arjun Rosha Doreen Wong Zulkifli Mohd Yusof Associate, Contracts Thomas Chong Associate, DPE Sit Wan Keat
DP ARCHITECTS UAE Senior Associate Director, Contracts Satish Rajan Associate Director Daniel Ling Senior Associate Cecilia Wong Associate Eisuke Hiyama Levin Lo
DP ARCHITECTS THAILAND Associate Jonathan Toh
DP ARCHITECTS UK Associate Director Kailas Moorthy
Associate Director Ada Sim William Kwan-Terry Senior Associate Marlon Sua Associate Alessandro Cesana Calliope Lee Connie Gonzales Erickson Perez Jeffrey Marinas Monica Boenawan Sharlyn Villalon
Associate Director Leslie Khuan Renee Cheong Tim Wedemeyer Senior Associate Norvin Ocampo Walter Parcero Associate Michael Doculara Steven Nah
Associate Director Mac Tan
DP GREEN Associate Lehana Guo
Associate Director Christine Chan
DP SUSTAINABLE DESIGN Senior Associate Taib Shabbir
CORPORATE SERVICES Senior Manager, Human Resource Kaitlyn Chan
Senior Manager, Human Resource (China) Joy Luo Senior Manager, Finance (China) Maggie Yao Assistant Manager, Finance Liang Li Tan Eng Chiu Assistant Manager, Human Resource Sharon Lim Soen Wee
in brief |
SHORT TAKES ON NEW & NOTABLE PROJECTS |
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DPA | 8 saint Thomas ST THOMAS WALK, SINGAPORE Situated at the junction of St Thomas Walk and River Valley Road, the large site offers luxurious urban condo-living within its spacious landscaped garden setting. One block of 35-storey and another block of 36-storey towers housing 250 apartment units and penthouses, are strategically placed at opposite ends of the rectilinear site to provide an unobstructed view of the cityscape. The twin blocks enclose a lush inner space, effectively creating an intimate sanctuary for the residents. Two corners of each twin tower are pulled away from the centre, giving the building distinctive form. The faรงade comprises an interplay between glass and solid surfaces to suit the functional needs of spaces behind. Stair cores and service areas are concealed behind patterned louvres; presenting the image of a high-end luxurious residence. The twin towers are set to become landmarks of the St Thomas Walk-River Valley area.
in brief |
SHORT TAKES ON NEW & NOTABLE PROJECTS |
D P A | C o l l i n s Boulevard TANGERANG, INDONESIA The first mixed-use development complex of its kind in Tangerang, Indonesia, Collins Boulevard, developed by Triniti Land, features a mixed programme that includes three residential towers, the tallest in the area; a lifestyle mall plaza; an office tower; and a four-star hotel. Three L-shaped apartment blocks are designed and arranged to reduce exposure to the afternoon sun. A continuous rooftop deck gives residents an uninterrupted 360-degree view of the neighbouring Alam Sutra and Serpong city. The use of vertical blades at the gable end walls facing the main Toll Road mitigates the mass of this 3000-unit development. At the other side, the office tower is designed with alternating sky terraces, breaking the monotony of the façade and serving as relaxation spaces for its users. Collins Boulevards also includes an eco-friendly retail space which culminates in the Collins Gallery; an artsy community-driven open space in the heart of Collins Boulevard. Green-plant canopies integrate with the terracing and podium façades to act as solar shading from the harsh afternoon sun.
DPA | Yulong Financial Centre
WUHAN, CHINA Located at Jianshe Avenue, the Wall Street of Wuhan, Yulong Financial Centre is a 52-storey mixed-use development integrating Grade A offices, luxury condominiums at the higher floors and a commercial podium with support facilities, retail and restaurants. The office tower and podium adopt the concept of interlocking forms – the eastern and western facades are broken down into several volumetric blocks with different treatments. The crown lights up at night to mark its presence as an important node for the city. The commercial podium façade is designed as a large glass volume of three floors, which creates a transparent externalised atrium and an inner sheltered environment for the public. Wrapped with a double skin for sunshading and visual impact; the textural quality of the podium is in contrast to that of the tower. The residential development at the top of the tower has a generous skytransfer lobby surrounded by a garden with panoramic views of the city. The residential clubhouse below the lobby features an indoor swimming pool, sauna, gym, entertainment rooms and a café.
in brief |
SHORT TAKES ON NEW & NOTABLE PROJECTS |
DPA | Bhubaneswar Residential Project BHUBANESWAR, INDIA Located in Bhubaneswar, India, the Bhubaneswar Residential Project is a high-end development comprising four towers with scenic views of a lush, pristine natural reserve. Towers 1 and 2 will hold smaller apartments while Towers 3 and 4 will house luxury residences of larger units. A holistic façade language unifies the four towers, with the two groups subtly differentiated in masonry. The architectural style is modern and designed for the tropical climate.
Premium amenities are integrated in the sky terrace floors, allowing each unit in the towers to get the best views of the natural reserve. Due to the stepped topography of the site, shared amenities are placed across the four floors of the podium; each connected by a wandering trail with an infinity pool as the backdrop.
DPd | ion sky
ORCHARD ROAD, SINGAPORE
Located on the top floor of ION Orchard, ION SKY is an observation gallery redesigned to be an experiential journey. Divided into three phases – Holding Area, Transitional Space and The Canopy – the journey unfolds through storytelling via multi-media LED screens and projection imagery in the space. To provide a canvas for the video projections, the space is dressed in a clean and light material palette with reflective metals for a touch of elegance.
Guests begin their journey from the Holding Area, where they see a large LED media wall accompanied by hanging leaves mimicking tree leaves and cloud imagery projections on the ceiling. Lift pods are fitted with OLED displays, visually enhancing the journey up to The Canopy while media plays. The Canopy space is equipped with over 13 metres of full-height media walls, panoramic projections and blackout blinds along the perimeter of the deck; and serves as a setting for a 360-degree media show. At the end of this visual journey, the blackout blinds roll up simultaneously to reveal the Singapore and Orchard skyline.
in brief |
SHORT TAKES ON NEW & NOTABLE PROJECTS |
DPE+DPF | East Coast Integrated Depot
UPPER CHANGI ROAD EAST, SINGAPORE
Scheduled for completion in 2024, the East Coast Integrated Depot will be located beside the current site of Changi Depot. It will be the first MRT depot in Singapore to serve three MRT lines and the second to be integrated with a bus depot after the Tuas West Depot on the East-West Line. In land-scarce Singapore, the depot is designed to conserve 44 hectares of land (equivalent to 60 football fields) yet have the capacity to house approximately 200 trains of varying sizes and lengths, and 550 buses.
A collaborative effort between DP Engineering and DP Facade, the building envelopes are designed to be naturally ventilated, with faรงades featuring extensive areas of architectural precast concrete. The faรงade for the stabling building consists of complex three-dimensional precast modules with a large diversity of designs.
D P F | Sun Tower
HO CHI MINH CITY, VIETNAM
Located in the Central Business District of Ho Chi Minh City, Sun Tower will soar 55 storeys above the town. As the appointed faรงade and BMU consultant for the project, DP Facade (DPF) engineered the exterior of Sun Tower to include full-height glazed curtain walls that will provide building users with panoramic views of the city. Working with the architects, DPF optimised the envelope design to unify the different volumes as a cohesive identity. The faรงade is also developed to be highly efficient and sustainable by minimising heat gain through the use of high-performance glass and sun-shading elements. The latter fully integrates with faรงade lighting elements so the building makes an impression by day and by night.
Building designed by Serie Architects of UK and Multiply Architects of Singapore.
Sun Tower derives its appearance from the money tree with shifting floor plates to create large terraces for networking spaces. Outfitted with outdoor seating and lush spill out areas, they form unique meeting spaces with views across the city.
IN DEPTH |
FEATURED PROJECTS |
Revitalising Paya Lebar Transforming the sleepy town of Paya Lebar, DP Architects’ teams combine forces to deliver a refreshed urbanscape that is at once accessible, sophisticated and dynamic.
As one of Singapore’s mature estates, Paya Lebar has grown from a squatter district to a bustling precinct in the 1950s. As Singapore continued to grow and develop new towns such as Tampines over the last 50 years, Paya Lebar became a sleepy counterpart to its eastside contemporaries. Decades on, the concept of city-fringe living is heating things up in districts that lie on the periphery of Singapore’s city core once more. Following the government’s announcement to redevelop Paya Lebar into a sophisticated sub-regional business hub in 2008, the mature district has been steadily shedding its dated look to embrace a new urbanscape. At the heart of this transformation is DP Architects. Of the full master plan, DPA has been tasked with three key but individual developments. They are Paya Lebar Square, SingPost Centre and Paya Lebar Quarter. Each has been assigned a different team of architects and have been envisioned as unique plots that contribute to a wider, cohesive development. Bringing their expertise in urban planning, typology knowledge, design strength and an unwavering desire to create architecture of excellence to the table, DP delivers a transformed Paya Lebar Central. Delving into the design concept and processes, In Depth explores how the teams created architecture and place-making that will contribute to a refreshed urbanscape that not only delights its community but also finds its identity in its people and culture.
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: ARTIST IMPRESSION OF PAYA LEBAR QUARTER; SINGPOST CENTRE; PAYA LEBAR SQUARE.
IN DEPTH |
SINGPOST CENTRE |
Year : 2017
Designed for the digital age Transforming Singpost Centre into an 'it' lifestyle destination for a new generation of consumers By Serine Chan
SingPost Centre is a new extension to the existing Singapore Post Centre that consists of the General Post Office, located next to Paya Lebar MRT station. The 25,000sqm retail wing was designed to embrace new technologies in online and offline commerce, and bring a fresh retail experience to the development that includes the revamped General Post Office and the Singapore Philatelic Museum. Design work commenced in 2014. After a year of design development, and two years of construction and fitting-out,
SingPost Centre opened in October 2017. The lifestyle and retail destination differentiates with its innovative digital retail services and customer service experiences, spearheaded by the General Post Office. The SingPost Centre retail extension adopts fundamentally modernist ideals in its glass-and-steel architecture. The design harmonises with the original Singapore Post building, which was designed in the architectural style of structural expressionism. The new extensionâ€™s
clarity of form, use of exposed steel girders, neutral colours and placid linearity create an uncluttered silhouette that portrays qualities of timelessness and sophistication, and complements the original building design. The use of machine-milled profiles and modern materials carries into the interior spaces, and each detail is engineered to embody the disciplined industrial-chic aesthetic. Daylight penetration and atrial views of greenery are designed to humanise the interior and create a naturally pleasant, well-balanced environment for leisure and respite.
To strike a balance between retaining the good spatial values of the existing building and exposing the tenants and the neighbourhood to new experiential values, the existing open plaza was transformed from a singular-platform space into an integrated and purposeful network of public spaces at various levels internally and externally. The outdoor community plaza between the MRT station and SingPost Centre, the sun-drenched indoor atrium with a skylight that opens up to a roof garden â€“ these shared spaces provide areas for people to gather and take part in social activities.
DESIGN TEAM: DP ARCHITECTS: CHIN THOE CHONG, ANG GUO ZI, FOO CHAI YEE, SERINE CHAN, KENNY FOO, TAN CHIENG SIEW, YAP WOON HWEE, ARMANDO F ARINO, WU YUMEI, EUGENE DIZON DP SUSTAINABLE DESIGN: LEE BOON WOEI
The massing of the expansion was curated in relation to the site context. The elevation facing the industrial area at Eunos Avenue 3 is monolithic while the elevation facing the MRT station is terraced to provide multi-level entrances, a plaza and a garden to celebrate the connectivity knot. On arrival, visitors are greeted by the industrial aesthetic adopted at the covered walkway and vehicle drop-off. Metal was chosen for the ceiling panels for its reflective materiality to complement the industrial look. The row of exposed steel H-columns with the down-hanging glass wall unifies the external walkways and is a key element in the
composition of the elevations. These spaces were designed to be of double-volume height to augment the presence of the steel colonnade and to give greater visibility to the shopfronts. The cantilevered roof garden above the main entrance allows unobstructed views from the external plaza into the atrium space. The fourstorey-high atrium is roofed by a generous skylight that visually connects to the existing office tower above. The interior design celebrates simplicity in its use of materials while embracing clean lines, abundant light, steel structure and cavernous space that define the industrial aesthetic.
The roof becomes the new ground for play, hosting diverse programmes including two restaurant pavilions, a children’s playground, eight cinemas and servicing areas. The cinemas are arranged within the three main volumes facing the industrial and commercial blocks; and the two restaurants extend into the voluminous atrium, giving diners options of views into the retail space and to the roof garden. Located at the fringe of the city and next to a key MRT interchange, SingPost Centre is easily accessible by private and public transport. Modern and vibrant, it is adding buzz to the developing Paya Lebar Central area, primed to be an important commercial nexus outside the city centre. With an architecture that appeals to the utilitarian and fuss-free lifestyle of the digital age, the centre distinguishes itself with a progressive retail model that responds to tech-driven consumer behaviour. Beyond its commercial success as a lifestyle destination, the redevelopment of SingPost Centre has a broader role to serve in the revitalisation of the precinct as a vibrant, integrated commercial hub that is a destination unto itself.
CLOCKWISE FROM RIGHT: THE FOURSTOREY-HIGH ATRIUM IS ROOFED BY A GENEROUS SKYLIGHT THAT BATHES THE INTERIOR WITH NATURAL LIGHT. THE ROOF BECOMES THE NEW GROUND FOR PLAY, HOSTING DIVERSE PROGRAMMES INCLUDING TWO RESTAURANT PAVILIONS, A CHILDREN’S PLAYGROUND, EIGHT CINEMAS AND SERVICING AREAS. THE CLARITY OF FORM, USE OF EXPOSED STEEL GIRDERS, AND PLACID LINEARITY CREATE AN UNCLUTTERED SILHOUETTE THAT PORTRAYS THE DISCIPLINED INDUSTRIAL-CHIC AESTHETIC.
WITH AN ARCHITECTURE THAT APPEALS TO THE UTILITARIAN AND FUSS-FREE LIFESTYLE OF THE DIGITAL AGE, THE CENTRE DISTINGUISHES ITSELF WITH A PROGRESSIVE RETAIL MODEL THAT RESPONDS TO TECH-DRIVEN CONSUMER BEHAVIOUR.
IN DEPTH |
PAYA LEBAR SQUARE |
Year : 2015
Building vibrancy Paya Lebar Square is all about efficient space planning for a people-centric development By Kathy Lok
Strategically located north of Paya Lebar MRT Interchange, Paya Lebar Square is the first commercial project to be completed in the new URA Master Plan for Paya Lebar Regional Centre; a district that has been identified as a key city-fringe area to be developed into a major commercial hub for office, shopping and hotel uses over the next 10 to 15 years. The strata-titled development comprises a 13-storey office tower set on a two-storey retail podium with one basement; and is directly connected to the MRT interchange. With its prominent location, Paya Lebar Square
was developed as a high-quality commercial property featuring prime office space, retail, food and beverage, entertainment and other commercial uses to add to the diversity of amenities and vibrancy of the area. The design concept capitalised on the busy pedestrian movement of the site between key transport nodes and placed seamless connectivity as a key design consideration. The retail component was, therefore, located at the basement and first two storeys. A central atrium topped with skylight was adopted as a spatial organising element weaving all the
levels of the mall together; the shops and circulation were clearly organised around this day-lit central area. Restaurants and balconies, intended as dining areas, were introduced within the atrium spaces at the first and second storeys to further generate activities along the circulation spaces. This has also effectively created a sense of interest and vibrancy within the high-volume atrium space. The office was located above the retail podium, with the car-parking spaces sandwiched in between. This approach provides a clear functional and formal distinction between
DESIGN TEAM: DP ARCHITECTS: TI LIAN SENG, TONG BIN SIN, WANG TSE LIP, KATHY LOK, KAREN YEO, DWESTRI WIKANSARI, HONG SIEW FOONG, ROLAND PINPIN, LYNN TAN DP ENGINEERS: GOH YONG PING, HO WENG KIN DP GREEN: YEONG WENG FAI, ZALDY ANDAYA, THUN KONGSUB DP SUSTAINABLE DESIGN: LEE BOON WOEI, TERRY WANG, HELEN YAN
THE DESIGN CONCEPT CAPITALISED ON THE BUSY PEDESTRIAN MOVEMENT OF THE SITE BETWEEN KEY TRANSPORT NODES AND FOCUSED ON SEAMLESS CONNECTIVITY. LEFT: SLEEK, CONTEMPORARY AND UPMARKET EXPRESSION, THE OFFICE TOWER IS ENVELOPED IN DARK GREY TINTED GLASS CURTAINWALL ARTICULATED WITH HORIZONTAL ALUMINIUM FINS. TOP FROM LEFT: RESTRAINT AND CONTROL PREVALENT IN THE OVERALL DESIGN LANGUAGE MAKES WAY FOR MORE EXUBERANT EXPRESSION IN FREEFORM CLOUD PATTERNED TRELLISES AND TREE-LIKE STRUCTURES TO SIGNIFY IMPORTANT ENTRANCES. RESTAURANTS AND BALCONY DINING AREAS WERE INTRODUCED WITHIN THE ATRIUM SPACES AT THE FIRST AND SECOND STOREYS TO FURTHER GENERATE ACTIVITIES ALONG THE CIRCULATION SPACES. RIGHT: SKETCH OF PAYA LEBAR SQUARE
the office and the retail components. Several iterations of the office tower floor plate were tested, with the final C-shaped configuration adopted from the 4th storey to the 13th storey. This orthogonal floor plate created a regular grid that allowed for optimal planning efficiency and view maximisation.
A 24-hour accessible through-block link was provided at the first storey along one edge of the atrium. This serves as a convenient and comfortable all-weather thoroughfare for direct pedestrian connectivity between the bus stop along Paya Lebar Road, Eunos Road and the neighbourhood beyond.
Full-height curtain-wall glazing ensured that each unit has maximum view out and daylighting – a welcome relief for the office environment. Externally, the two wings of the C-shaped office block and the continuous podium façade define the much-needed urban edge along Upper Paya Lebar Road. The hollowing out of the central portion also provided some spatial relief articulation in the form of a landscaped area at the podium roof. The landscaped roof terrace on the fourth storey slopes down to the second storey, visually and spatially bridging the street-level with the podium roof and the tower. A high-volume freeform trellis structure hovers over the secondstorey roof terrace and provides shading for activities while architecturally signifying a grand entrance gesture for the retail podium.
At the first storey, outward-facing retail and restaurant spaces with outdoor refreshment areas were proposed along the covered walkway, further contributing to the street vibrancy. A 24m-wide drainage reserve that runs the entire length of the boundary along Eunos Road 8 was decked over to double up as a landscaped pedestrian walk and vehicular drop-off. Careful placement of planting and street furniture ensured good spatial continuity between this and the covered walkway. Well-ventilated and shaded from the afternoon sun by the office tower, this outdoor space serves as a natural extension of the mall to attract spontaneous community activities that contribute to the place-making quality of the space.
DESIGN TEAM: DP ARCHITECTS: ANGELENE CHAN, SUNEETH CHANGAROTH, LEE WAI FONG, CHEANG MEI LING, SEOW LEE KOON, DAVID LIAUW, NG WEI QI, LOW SI NI, DANIEL PO, RULLY ADRIAN, TEO QIAO LIN, JOCELYN CHEN, ANDY TAN, ERICK SAMINAL, MELVIN TAN, IAN SOLIVA, ALVIN ARRE, JARED LEE, ASHLEY GEH, CHUA YI XI DP DESIGN: MIKE LIM, CHRISTINE PASCUAL, EMILIE TANLAPCO, RAYMOND LOPEZ, MOCHAMAD IKHSAN
A new business hub Paya Lebar Quarter: weaving a new urban fabric By Shawn Teo
IN DEPTH |
PAYA LEBAR QUARTER |
Year : 2018
Located next to Paya Lebar MRT Station, Paya Lebar Quarter (PLQ) sits at the heart of the 12-hectare Paya Lebar Central, which is slated to be a nodal business hub since 2008 as part of the government’s intent to decentralise and ease the burden of the Central Business District. By providing Grade-A office space and high-quality retail, bolstered with pedestrian-friendly public amenities, PLQ will meet the Urban Redevelopment Authority’s (URA) aspiration of bringing jobs closer to homes and create sustainable and wellconsidered urban districts. The four-hectare mixed-use development comprises three office towers, a retail mall and a 429-unit residential development, which are connected at the second storey via an Elevated Pedestrian Network. PLQ Mall, with a rooftop garden, is linked to two 14-storey office blocks via a public plaza, which allows seamless pedestrian connections at the ground plane between the MRT, retail and office plots. In addition, the mall is connected via Basement 2 to Park Place Residences, PLQ's three 17-storey residential towers. A public promenade at grade weaves the residences and another single 13-storey office block with a range of alfresco dining offers. PLQ Plaza, an outdoor space, provides covered outdoor spaces for community events all year round in celebration of the neighbourhood’s rich cultural heritage. A community’s aspiration: Planning PLQ A sense of community ownership and pride is critical to the success of any project; and it is important to engage the community early in the life of a project so that the built form reflects both the needs and aspirations of
those who will use it. Community consultation highlighted the importance of PLQ as a gateway to the neighbourhood. Meetings with Geylang Serai Member of Parliament, Assoc Prof Fatimah Lateef, and local Community Centres of Geylang Serai and MacPherson proved highly beneficial. It provided a forum to introduce the project to residents and engage them early to understand their concerns. In addition, the project team was also invited to join a cultural tour of Geylang to deepen their understanding of the precinct. Paya Lebar is located near Geylang Serai, one of the oldest Malay settlements in Singapore. Today, Geylang Serai is also well-known in the region as the 'Malay emporium’ of Singapore. It has been a melting pot for the exchange of goods, services and ideas, ranging from its agricultural surrounds, trade fairs and shop houses, to the wide variety of street food. It is here that the first Hari Raya Light Up took place and has continued to do so every year since. During the month of Ramadan, the streets around Geylang Serai come alive with pasar malams (night markets), colourful lights and festive décor. Today, a new wave of redevelopment has resulted in the emergence of new businesses such as art galleries, design studios, retail outlets, offices, boutique hotels and eateries. As the focal point between the historic and diverse communities of Geylang, Joo Chiat and Tanjong Katong, the design of PLQ shows an appreciation and respect for the layers of social history and built environment to deliver a distinct and vibrant experience for the local community.
MAIN: INTERSECTING THE FOUR PLOTS IN PAYA LEBAR QUARTER IS A SIGNIFICANT CENTRAL PUBLIC REALM THAT WILL OFFER OPPORTUNITIES FOR COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT, CURATED EVENTS AND DYNAMIC RETAIL ACTIVATION OF THE GROUND PLANE. LEFT: PROGRESSIVE SKETCHES OF EACH BUILDING WITHIN PAYA LEBAR QUARTER SHOWS HOW THEY ARE EVENTUALLY CLOTHED IN PATTERNING INSPIRED BY THE SONGKET.
LEFT: DRAWING INSPIRATION FROM THE SONGKET, THESE SKETCHES REINTERPRET THE TRADITIONAL MALAY CLOTH. RIGHT: RESIDENCES ON PLOT C MAXIMISES VIEWS TOWARDS THE KALLANG BASIN.
The songket: Designing Paya Lebar’s urban fabric One of the key considerations was to generate a consistent design approach for a development that comprises seven buildings located on four separate sub-plots that are divided by arterial roads and drainage reserves; each contending with a different set of external adjacencies. In order to achieve a coherent design, a common set of design tools were developed in terms of language, proportion and colour. This reference set allowed for permutations to differentiate the four sub-plots, respective buildings, asset classes and public spaces within PLQ. Geylang Serai has been the site of barter and trade for more than one hundred years, with fabrics being one of the main commodities. Songket, which utilises intricate weaving techniques, multiple patterns and rich colours, is a traditional brocade and a piece of art used by the Malay community to decorate milestone events. This is because the gold or silver threads of this cherished material visually represent ceremony and celebration. As a rich design language, the songket allows for flexibility in the façade designs of the office, retail, residential plots and public realm through permutations in geometry, colour and rhythm. Recurring motifs of songket patterns unify the façade, landscaping and night lighting with a common design language that is now immediately identifiable with PLQ. Given the plot sizes and a height constraint of 64m, the resultant buildings are mid-rise towers that rest on relatively broad podium bases. However, with this new design language, the team was able to assuage the massing through an elegant series of bands, strips and borders. This breaks away from monolithic structures of stout proportions while integrating the podium and towers. The songket weave permeates the entire design of PLQ, from the façade to landscape and lighting, to craft an immersive experience for the community and visitors.
ABOVE: PLQ MALL IS POSITIONED ON PLOT A AS AN URBAN MARKER, DRAWING PEDESTRIANS THROUGH THE DEVELOPMENT WHILE LINKING TO SURROUNDING NEIGHBOURHOODS ALONG WITH MAJOR BUS AND TRAIN ROUTES. THE FACADE OF THE RETAIL MALL SPORTS LAYERS OF HORIZONTAL FENESTRATIONS SPORADICALLY POPPED OUT TO EXPRESS DYNAMISM AND VIGOUR. LEFT: ALUMINIUM DETAILING IN COPPER AND GOLD HUES WAS USED ON THE FAÇADE OF THE OFFICE BUILDING TO CREATE A MUTED BUT CLASSY FACADE.
Articulating the brocade: Desirable, accessible, identifiable A lattice-like pattern gives the residential façade an unified appearance by expressing the vertical fin walls throughout the towers with horizontal ledges inserted between them. Lush planters line the podium façade in relation to the soft landscapes of the residential environmental deck and activated public promenade below. For the office towers, the interplay between lighter and darker tinted glazing within the curtain wall grids mimic silver threads woven as accents in the brocade. This pattern reduces in scale as it extends downwards from typical office floorplates to the podium car park. A lightweight, tensile canopy shelters the public plaza between plots A and B, and allows for seamless pedestrian connectivity at the ground plane between the MRT, retail and office plots. The diagrid of suspension cables and tensile membranes is assembled to form the overarching canopy, recalling the signature songket rhombus pattern. The landscape hopes to build a stronger relationship between the architectural design and public realm. For the Promenade, the landscape cascades from the vertical green and folds over the top of the roof deck to embrace the environmental deck.
Many would recall the grand Banyan Tree on site, which inspired Grant Associates in their landscape design strategy to draw this character inwards into the heart of PLQ. A study of the sun's path over the development identified important strategies for the siting and orientation of public spaces. This also informed preliminary planting strategy such as the location of important shade trees and the likely pedestrian routes. In terms of place-making within the development, different light strategies are woven into various keynote spaces in relation to their programme and adjacencies. Optimised lighting design combines multiple functions beyond wayfinding. It aims to guide residents, workers and visitors through specific atmospheres, transforming mood and branding the space with a specific identity.
PLQ aims to be a lively pedestrian friendly commercial hub with a distinctive cultural identity. The visionary narrative from URA, which describes Singapore’s next phase of urban development towards polycentricism, drives for local purpose and identity. With plans for Jurong Lake District well underway, Paya Lebar will be a counterpoint in the central-east of Singapore as the nation looks for new and innovative urban development models. The physical proximity and co-location of office, retail, residential and transit can encourage serendipitous interactions and forge unexpected relationships, fostering a sense of community and identity. It is with this notion of local employment and an understood relationship to more things local that Singapore will be able to move towards a more dynamic and highly sustainable urban economy.
PAYA LEBAR QUARTER AIMS TO BE A LIVELY, SUSTAINABLE AND WELLCONSIDERED COMMERCIAL HUB WITH A DISTINCTIVE CULTURAL IDENTITY.
TRENDS & ANALYSIS |
URBAN REGENERATION Bringing vibrancy to light industrial zones By Djoko Prihanto
industrial zones. Industrial activities in Singapore have evolved towards light and clean industries, and some industrial buildings here have changed from monotonous blocks to architectural creations. However, most light industrial areas in Singapore remain largely an urban backyard â€“ quiet, lifeless and dark after office hours. Even though attractive showrooms that welcome visitors are located on the ground floor, they are not designed with complementary amenities to be an attractive place for people to socialise, and are usually closed after operation hours.
Singapore is an urban laboratory where new urban initiatives are tried and tested. The integration of multiple uses in one development is an initiative that has been well-executed and well-worth observing. Such developments, including Our Tampines Hub and Heartbeat@ Bedok, integrate various community facilities under one roof to create a vibrant multipurpose environment, optimise land use and add a unique character to the city. These developments have the advantage of being
relatively close to Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) stations, which increase their accessibility and reduce the need for excessive carparking facilities. Singapore Sports Hub and Yishunâ€™s Northpoint City are examples of how this integration created a unique and vibrant environment, improved efficiency and rejuvenated the surrounding areas. While these initiatives deserve applause, more could be done to apply this integration to our
An attempt to allow religious activities to be held in industrial buildings did not bring much change; perhaps because it was not promoted, and perhaps due in part to the perception of industrial zones as secluded and even unsafe. It is a pity because religious activities, mostly held during weekends and after office hours, would be a good fit for industrial zones. With improvement in lighting, security and accessibility by public transport, religious activities could generate commercial viability and put car-parking facilities to use.
MAIN ROAD MRT 22
D PA IS WO R L D NO. 8
01 An unusual example of a vibrant and attractive light industrial area is the development of the cluster around Tai Seng MRT station, where BreadTalk, Sakae Building and 18 Tai Seng are located. This development exemplifies how mix of use and urban design guidelines can be introduced to create a vibrant strip with high and wide covered walkways, F&B outlets and an open public plaza that leads to the underground MRT station. While not yet fully optimised, such spaces open up opportunities for various events and festivals to happen after office hours and during the weekends. While urban spaces within industrial zones may be less attractive than high-rental ones in CBD or residential areas, they offer an economical alternative for events and small businesses, giving would-be entrepreneurs a leg up. With well-designed spaces and astute management, attractive evening activities such as flea markets, food-streets, and arts and crafts bazaars could be introduced to enrich these areas. In the near future, with the expansion of the MRT network, it would be beneficial to integrate the stations with parts of light industrial zones, so that these areas can be regenerated as attractive urban spaces with a good mix of uses. Not only will this optimise land use and make good use of existing parking facilities, they will also create more work-and-play settings while adding variety to lifestyle destinations.
LIGHT INDUSTRIAL ZONES, WITH ASTUTE PLANNING, CAN BE REGENERATED AS VIBRANT URBAN SPACES WITH ATTRACTIVE EVENING AND WEEKEND ACTIVITIES; NOT ONLY CAN THIS OPTIMISE LAND USE, IT CAN ALSO BOOST COMMERCIAL VIABILITY. About the author Djoko Prihanto is the Director of Urban Planning and Design at DP Architects. He has over 25 years of experience in regional and city planning, and urban design in Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Djoko lectures on urban planning at NUS’s Department of Real Estate and sits on the Advisory Committee of the City of Kigali, Rwanda.
TOP LEFT: AN ARTIST’S RENDERING OF A LIGHT INDUSTRIAL CLUSTER INTEGRATED WITH LIFESTYLE PROGRAMMES AND PUBLIC PLAZAS. BOTTOM LEFT: LINKING LIGHT INDUSTRIAL ZONES WITH THE PUBLIC TRANSPORT NETWORK WILL HELP TO INCREASE COMMERCIAL POTENTIAL.
AWARDS & EVENTS |
L ARGEST ARCHITECTURE FIRM DP Architects is the world’s eighth largest architecture practice, according to an annual global ranking of the top 100 largest architecture firms compiled by Building Design, a leading UK-based online resource for the profession. Rising two spots from last year’s ranking, DP Architects is the only Southeast Asian firm in the top ten list dominated by firms from the world’s largest countries like USA, Canada and China. The survey ranks the firms according to the number of architects. DPA employs 1,300 staff in their 17 offices worldwide, out of which 766 are architectural employees.
C R EAT IV IT Y IN B US I N E S S M AN AG EM EN T CEO SHARES HER INSIGHTS
DPA CEO Ms Angelene Chan was invited to share her management and leadership experience at Singapore Management University in the CEO Talks programme headed by Professor Pang Eng Fong, held at the Lee Kong Chian School of Business on 1 February. Speaking to business undergraduates on the topic of Strategic Transformation and Fostering Design in a Creative Practice, Ms Chan described her process of nurturing creativity and continued enquiry through design in DPA. A believer that creativity should be the heart of all businesses, especially in a large-scale global organisation where creativity with purpose can have a big impact on communities, she shared her views on grooming the next generation of design innovators and providing the firm with the necessary knowledge skills to remain relevant.
OPTIMISE DESIGN AND IMPR OVE LIVEABILITY M I P N B I N T E R N AT I O N A L CONFERENCE
DP Sustainable Design director Mr Lee Boon Woei was a speaker at the Malaysia Institute of Planners International Conference, where he weighed in on creating liveable spaces through environmentally sustainable design. Addressing the overarching theme of Planning Cities towards Liveability, Mr Lee explained his design approach that capitalises on advances in computational simulations to remove guesswork and optimise design. He also spoke on the importance of understanding the environmental conditions of the site and creating an efficient landscaping strategy. The conference was held on 27 January at Setia Spice Convention Centre in Penang, Malaysia.
IN PERSON |
DP INTERVIEW |
Placing DPians in the spotlight
BEHIND THE SCENES Three projects; three teams; one urbanscape – This is how DP Architects designed Paya Lebar Square, SingPost Centre and Paya Lebar Quarter for a cohesive Paya Lebar experience. Interview by Belle Chung
As the body of experts with the s k i l l s a n d k n ow - h ow t o t ra n s l a t e t h e n e e d s o f a co m m u n i t y a n d t h e v i s i o n o f a g ov e r n m e n t i n t o a fe a s i b l e a n d t a n g i b l e o u t c o m e , a rc h i t e c t s p l ay a v i t a l ro l e i n t h e u r b a n d ev e l o p m e n t o f a c i t y. A n d a t D P, w e a re n o s t ra n g e r t o t h i s. We h av e a cc u m u l a t e d e x p e r i e n ce i n d e s i g n i n g u r b a n s c a p e s t h ro u g h o u r w o r k o n k ey n o t e p ro j e c t s i n M a r i n a B ay C e n t re a n d a l o n g O rc h a rd R o a d ; e f fe c t i v e l y t ra n s fo r m i n g urban masses into a sustainable a n d l i v e a b l e e n v i ro n m e n t . To d ay, co n t r i b u t i n g to t h e rev i t a l i sa t i o n o f t h e Paya L e b a r C e n t ra l a re a , we b r i n g o u r we l l h o n e d ex p e r t i s e a n d t i m e - te ste d m et h o d o l og i e s to d e l i ve r f i rst - c l a s s a rc h i te c t u re t h a t a re we l l p o i s e d to re j u ve n a te o n e o f S i n g a p o re ’s o l d e st d i s t r i c t s. B eg i n n i n g w i t h Paya L e b a r S q u a re ( P L S ) fo l l owe d b y S i n g Po s t C e n t re ( S P C ) a n d Paya L e b a r Q u a r te r ( P L Q ) , e a c h p ro j e c t b r i n g s u n i q u e yet co h e s i ve d e s i g n s o l u t i o n s to t h e u r b a n s ca p e . To u c h i n g b a s e w i t h p ro j e c t m e m b e rs – A n g G u o Z i , C h e a n g Mei Ling, Kathy Lok and S e ow L e e Ko o n o f D P A rc h i t e c t s, a n d T h u n Ko n g S u b o f D P G re e n ,
In Pe r s o n d e l v e s i n t o t h e w h a t , w h y a n d h ow b e h i n d o u r d e s i g n p ro ce s s e s a s w e l l a s t h e f u t u re o f o f f - ce n t re b u s i n e s s d ev e l o p m e n t s a c ro s s S i n g a p o re .
Ang Guo Zi SingPost Centre Seow Lee Koon Paya Lebar Quarter
PLANS TO TRANSFORM PAYA LEBAR INTO AN OFF-CENTRE, VIBRANT COMMERCIAL HUB ARE WELL ON ITS WAY. HOW DO OUR PROJECTS – PAYA LEBAR SQUARE, PAYA LEBAR QUARTER AND SINGPOST CENTRE – FIT INTO THIS URBAN VISION? Kathy Lok: Being part of a city’s urban expansion vision, Paya Lebar Square carries pragmatic goals of intensified land use in the midst of developing a decentralised commercial centre. Whilst the design considerations were taken in view of economic gain, the built form tries to strike a balance of work and leisure, with the introduction of a green oasis pocket as part of an urbanised spatial relief. The public realm is enhanced through open spaces, multi-level sheltered pedestrian connections to neighbouring buildings, road re-alignment and integration
with the public transport network for efficient accessibility to amenities. This not only strengthens a new sustainable compact urban growth, it also enhances the quality of life whereby spontaneous community activities contribute to its place-making. This would, in turn, attract a diversified profile of investors into a re-energised sub-regional district. Thun KongSub: Our projects help to complete the city framework with three vital functions: They provide opportunities for social exchange in public meeting spaces, a marketplace that facilitates the commercial exchange of goods and services, and connectivity as well as accessibility.
simultaneously acts as landmarks for the district, giving users a sense of orientation. Beyond these, our work creates character and identity, allowing users to feel a sense of pride and belonging to the district. Ang Guo Zi: In view of this, the revamped SingPost Centre mall doubles the original retail quantum in its strategic location next to Paya Lebar MRT station. This intensification of retail land use is part of URA’s plans for island-wide decentralisation of urban centres to relieve overcrowding and congestion in the downtown city centres.
Our landscape architecture team works hard
Significantly, the cineplex at SPC also fills a gap – what the Straits Times termed as a ‘cinema desert’ – in entertainment offering in
to provide spaces for an improved quality of living by integrating landscape design into these new functions. The landscape design
the region. Prior to the opening of SPC, there were no operating cinemas between Bugis and Tampines on the East-West MRT line.
Cheang Mei Ling Paya Lebar Quarter Kathy Lok Paya Lebar Square
Thun KongSub Paya Lebar Square
IN PERSON |
DP INTERVIEW |
from the challenges encountered by the other teams, especially when dealing with the various agencies. SLK: That’s right. The sharing sessions were vital. For one, it resulted in the reduction of abortive work pertaining to design, technical and authority compliance issues. It also provided a much clearer design direction. These translated into tremendous time and cost savings.
THE DESIGN OF EACH BUILDING HAS ITS OWN DISTINCT FEATURES. WHAT, IN YOUR OPINION, IS THE MOST UNIQUE ASPECT ABOUT EACH BUILDING?
PART OF THE ARCHITECT’S ROLE IN URBAN TRANSFORMATION IS TO PRESERVE THE CHARACTER OF THE DISTRICT WHILE LOOKING AHEAD TO THE FUTURE. - ang guo zi
Seow Lee Koon: Yes… Across the board, our projects do not just transform the Paya Lebar skyline but bring a new dimension that injects vibrancy and life into the district. With the upcoming completion of Paya Lebar Quarter, the district will assume a new urban identity, giving rise to a sense of place with distinctive character and an enhanced urban experience, which will be deeply felt by both occupants and visitors. Cheang Mei Ling: As Paya Lebar is the closest commercial hub to the CBD, it will become a city within a city where residents can live, work, play and relax without the need to commute far.
ONE MASTER PLAN, THREE SEPARATE PROJECTS WITH THREE PROJECT TEAMS AND DIFFERENT TIMELINES. CAN WE DISCUSS THE LAND PARCELS AND HOW THE THREE PROJECTS RELATE TO EACH OTHER?
KL: PLS being the first government landsale site meant that the team could conduct design sharing sessions within the office with members of SPC and PLQ teams, specifically focused on communal areas and interfacing facilities. AGZ: In the initial design stages of SPC, we spoke with the PLS team to understand the previous planning principles and their discussions with URA. In turn, during PLQ’s initial design stages, the SPC team also met with the PLQ team to exchange notes on the urban plaza between our sites. Although SPC has been officially launched, we are still involved in conversations on the interfaces of public plazas, floor finishes and details with LTA. CML: These design dialogues between the teams were crucial to the design process. We could tap on the experience and learn
TKS: The first development within the Paya Lebar Master Plan to be built, PLS is unique for its location. The land parcel, situated next to Paya Lebar MRT Interchange, is surrounded by numerous residential and community areas. Engaging the pedestrian traffic was a key design focus. To then take this feature and make the building unique, everything – from architecture to wayfinding and landscaping – has to come together. So the floor pattern of PLS not only presents an eye-catching design, it also creates a link between the building and the site surrounding. In addition, softscape was used to create another depth to the urbanscape; linking the greenery from ground floor to the fourth-storey garden. This added visual appeal while increasing bio-diversity. KL: Yes, with this in mind, communal spaces are crucial to our design of PLS. An open ground space has been designed in addendum with an extensive landscaped deck over a drainage reserve; hence, it encourages healthy communal activities such as line dancing, evening exercises, etc. This not only provides better neighbouring communications but also aligns with public healthy lifestyle campaign. The prevailing wind condition of the PLS site is a huge natural advantage. Tapping into this natural source of ventilation, we designed an open ground space that benefits its users. We
worked with DP Green to further maximise the user comfort of the space. An example is how we incorporated extensive greenery along the perimeter of the development on the first, second and fourth storeys to generate a cooler environment for walkability and better use of these peripheral spaces.
KATHY, WHILE WORKING ON PAYA LEBAR SQUARE, WERE THERE ANY SPECIAL REQUESTS FROM THE CLIENT? HOW DID THE TEAM ACHIEVE IT? KL: During our design process, the client requested for façade lighting design. Though it was not an urban requirement by the authorities, there was a need to balance their business objective with their desire to create a successful and pleasant shopping mall. Thus, it was with the financial support and initiative of the developer that night lighting was introduced on the fenestration and the lit “cloud” trellis above the landscaped deck fronting Paya Lebar Road from the second storey of the development. This contributes to the spatial quality of the mall environment as well as the excitement of the Paya Lebar street life at night and the wider urban vibrancy of the vicinity.
KONGSUB, WHAT WAS THE CONCEPT AND STARTING POINT FOR THE LANDSCAPE DESIGN FOR PAYA LEBAR SQUARE? HOW DOES THE SCHEME TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION OR RELATE TO THE SITE CONTEXT AND PURPOSE? TKS: The intent of the landscape design was to be very graphic and eye-catching as the site is directly fronting Paya Lebar MRT Interchange. The hardscape was striated in patterned tiles to lead the eye directionally towards the building frontage. To support this visual line, Michelia champaca was selected for its fragrant flowers and columnar form because of the narrow planting strip, and was placed at the rear. The softscape, on the other hand, was patterned in alternating bands of different low-lying shrubs; thereby, allowing it to relate to the opposite development and ingress-egress road. Terminalia mollis trees were selected due to its horizontal layered branching, allowing views to the retail shopfronts and along the column grids to minimise obstruction. The fourth storey is for office tenant use, thus, similar bands of shrubs were employed to create a corporate outlook when viewed
PAYA LEBAR WILL BECOME A CITY WITHIN A CITY WHERE RESIDENTS CAN LIVE, WORK AND PLAY. - Cheang mei ling
from the offices above. A 35-metre-long water cascade feature adds the dimensions of sound and movement. This was enhanced by incorporating a canted slab of cobbled granite finish, creating a white-water effect as water cascades down this surface from the top of the skylight. Planters with broad-leafed tree Brachychiton acerifolius were introduced at the bottom of the cascade with seats incorporated to offer respite from the office environment.
WHAT ABOUT PAYA LEBAR QUARTER? WHAT WOULD YOU SAY IS UNIQUE ABOUT IT AND WHY? CML: To me, the façade treatment is its most unique feature because it was conceptualised from the rich historical and cultural Geylang Serai precinct. This is evident in the intricate weaving of the songket pattern found in the overlapping façade panels and in the rich colours. SLK: Yes. The façade design, visually interesting and appealing, comes with its own set of challenges – specifically, the expression of the cultural nuances of the songket. The façade has to be compatible with the commercial perception of a Grade-A office; at the same time, the flavour of the songket cannot be lost in the design definition. The result is a building that has elegantly incorporated subtle contextual meaning, yet retains the distinguished expression of a premium office.
THE MIXED-USE TYPOLOGY IS UNIQUE TO SINGAPORE’S URBANSCAPE AND A STAPLE IN OUR ARCHITECTURAL HISTORY. HOW DOES PAYA LEBAR QUARTER OPTIMISE THE USE OF SPACE AND PROGRAMME? CML: Every square foot of the area was carefully thought through. The existing canal, drainage and sewage reserves were covered up and converted to plaza and promenade. The integration of residences, offices, retail, recreational spaces such as the gym and the cinemas, and urban spaces ensures that the experience is connected and wholesome.
IN PERSON |
SLK: That’s right. PLQ has been designed as a city precinct where work, shopping, dining and living experiences come together in one vibrant community. The four plots of PLQ have been uniquely designed yet closely relate to one another. They are also designed to seamlessly connect both the outdoors and the indoors. The outdoor plaza and promenade have been highlighted with lush greenery which connects to an island-wide network of park connectors.
LET’S TAKE A LOOK AT SINGPOST CENTRE. GUO ZI, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY IS ITS OUTSTANDING FEATURE? AGZ: SingPost Centre is a new annexe to the existing General Post Office headquarters built almost two decades ago in 1999. Its architecture is of the high-tech, futurist movement and parts of it closely echo Richard Rogers' Lloyd's building in London. We wanted the architecture of the annexe to be in harmony with the
DP INTERVIEW |
original building, and as Paya Lebar was once an industrial district we felt the simplicity of modernism was the best fit. Its industrial silhouette of clean lines, structural lightness and steel girders retains the genius loci of the district. A retail mall in the industrial style is uncommon here and SPC’s outstanding feature is its unique character which marks the passing of an era. Whilst providing shoppers with a new leisure destination it also seeks to capture the memory of its place – bringing to mind Kevin Lynch's phrase: "What time is this place?"
SINGPOST CENTRE IS NOTABLE FOR ITS INTEGRATED E-COMMERCE LOGISTICS SOLUTIONS. CAN YOU SHARE A LITTLE MORE ABOUT HOW THIS CAME ABOUT AND WHAT WERE THE DESIGN CHALLENGES THAT THE TEAM FACED? AGZ: In today's digital era and infusion of technology in our lifestyle, Singapore Post has
reinvented the way it operates and serves its clientele. Snail mail has declined whilst global distribution, logistics and deliveries from online retailing are burgeoning. From the outset Singapore Post was interested in looking at new modes of shopping, smart omni-channel platforms, app-based shopping and lightening stockpiles in shops. One of the challenges in retail planning was to fuse the retail and office components seamlessly in terms of circulation, and create a proper sense of arrival for office users with proper segregation of uses for security purposes.
HOW HAS THE DP TEAM AS A WHOLE CREATED A UNIQUE YET COHESIVE 'PAYA LEBAR EXPERIENCE'? SLK: It is in the public spaces. While each project stands uniquely, the public spaces have been designed to weave through these projects; thereby integrating the three developments where possible. Also, a selection of complementary materials and the approach to colour scheme help to visually tie PLS, PLQ and SPC together. In this manner, we crafted a smoother transition of user experience and built the larger 'Paya Lebar experience'.
HOW DO YOU THINK THE BUSINESS CENTRES AND COMMERCIAL HUBS OF SINGAPORE ARE EVOLVING? COULD YOU TALK ABOUT THE ARCHITECT’S ROLE IN URBAN TRANSFORMATION AND IN WHAT WAYS CAN ARCHITECTURE CATALYSE THE ECONOMIC VIABILITY OF A CITY?
OUR PROJECTS DO NOT JUST TRANSFORM THE PAYA LEBAR SKYLINE, BUT ALSO BRING A NEW DIMENSION. - seow lee koon
AGZ: There is evident progress towards greater decentralisation and bringing leisure, businesses and workplaces closer to homes with the Jurong Lake District, Paya Lebar district, Punggol’s Enterprise District and Digital District master-plan developments of late. Sometimes, part of the architect’s role in urban transformation is to recognise and preserve a certain character of the district, the genius loci, while also looking ahead towards the future. Urban intensification, redevelopment is often an inevitable process of growth in cities; but retaining the character of place is part of adding vibrancy and enhancing the urban experience for residents in the area.
TKS: I agree… Off-centre business districts are, in part, a response to the increasing traffic and pedestrian congestion in Singapore’s Central Business District. This decentralisation will bring work places closer to home. What happens then, is that the standard town centres in residential districts will transform into dynamic hubs where work, life and play come together to enhance the notion of work-life balance. CML: Jurong East and Tampines are clear examples of off-centre business districts. The success of these commercial hubs are dependent on the architect’s ability to take cues from the surrounding neighbourhood to deliver a product at once on par with the CBD yet keeping with the local culture of the precinct. TKS: Yes. Every precinct has its own identity and groove. Landscape architects, working with the architects, plays a vital part in building character and elevating the distinctiveness of each district through the sculpting of green spaces. KL: Creating and adapting architecture for new use is the tangible, visible approach in regenerating urban spaces. Beyond that, renewed economic, social and recreational options have to be injected. The rise of the Smart City involves, aside from architects and urban planners, stakeholders like developers, investors, community members, to achieve high-quality liveable spaces in our built-up environment without losing the cultural integrity of the living spaces.
LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTS PLAY A VITAL ROLE IN ELEVATING THE DISTINCTIVENESS OF EACH DISTRICT. - Thun kongsub
FOLLOWING THE COMPLETION OF PAYA LEBAR’S MASTER PLAN, IT WILL BE A NEW CITY FOR SURE. CAN WE GO SO FAR AS TO CALL IT A ‘SMART CITY’? IF SO, CAN YOU FURTHER DEFINE THE ‘SMART CITY’ FOR US IN THE CONTEXT OF PAYA LEBAR AND OUR PROJECTS? SLK: While a Smart building is typically defined by its use of different types of electronic data collection sensors to supply information that can be utilised to manage assets and resources efficiently, the definition
HIGH QUALITY, LIVEABLE SPACES INVOLVES ARCHITECTS, URBAN PLANNERS AND STAKEHOLDERS. - kathy lok
of the Smart City is intrinsically linked to the quality of life a built environment can offer. For PLQ, our design emphasis is to achieve just that – a better quality of life. For this focus, the project is the first in Singapore to be awarded the highest sustainability standard for the new Green Mark Platinum, which addresses sustainability in a balanced and holistic manner, and, more significantly, recognises sustainable design features that boost the health and well-being of building occupants. AGZ: Well, some of the retailers of SingPost Centre including the new Smart Post Office have taken a decisive step into the digital age with its omni-channel platforms such as mobile apps and self-service technology. Digital innovations such as GV's Smart Laser projections are also a first in Singapore's cinemas. NTUC at SingPost Centre also uses scan-and-go technology to reduce waiting time at checkouts as well as augmented and virtual reality corners where shoppers can try out new products. Smart City in our case is essentially the move towards further automation, lessening the reliance on service staff, greater efficiency and higher productivity. Living Smart means shortening the process of getting things done – groceries, postal services, etc – leaving more time for ourselves to do the things we really want.
A Common Line | One Global Studio DP Architects’ 50th anniversary exhibition travels to Kuala Lumpur A Common Line | One Global Studio – the exhibition that charts the 50-year design journey of DP Architects – travelled to Kuala Lumpur for a six-week show at the PAM Centre, after a successful seven-week run at the URA Centre in Singapore. The KL exhibition was officially opened on 18 January by guest of honour, Datuk Haji Mohd Najib Bin Haji Mohd, Executive Director of Dewan Bandaraya Kuala Lumpur. Over 140 invited guests attended the opening, including special guests, Singapore High Commissioner Mr Vanu Gopala Menon and PAM President Ar Ezumi Harzani Ismail. The KL edition featured four specially commissioned models of DP Architects’ works in Malaysia, which were not exhibited in the original show. Taking pride of place as the centrepiece of the show was Ampang Park Shopping Complex. Completed in 1973, it was the firm’s first overseas project and the city’s first mall; and was attributed as a catalyst to the flourishing of the district in KL. Other models on display include the Singapore High Commission Building and Berjaya Central Park in KL, and Setia Spice Arena in Penang. The exhibition closed on 28 February 2018.
50 years of architectural excellence
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T H E C H I N AT OW N EXPERIENCE D P A rc h it ec t s wa s t h e l ea d c o n s u l t a n t o f a m a st e r- p l a n p ro p o sa l t o rev i t a l i s e Chin a t ow n , h ea de d by t h e t h en - S in g a p o re To u r i st Pro m ot i o n B oa rd . B eyo n d t h e p hys i c a l deve lo p m en t o f t h e a rea s t h a t defin e Ch i n a t own , i n c l u d i n g p ro p o sa l s f o r n ew re s i d e n t i a l and h ot el deve lo p m en t s, t h e m a st e r p l a n re c o m m e n d e d t h e st re n g t h e n i n g o f t h e i d e n t i t y of C h in a t ow n t h ro u g h t h e c rea t i o n o f a key f o c a l p o i n t t h a t wi l l s e r ve a s a g a t h e r i n g sp a c e fo r den iz en s, l o c a ls a n d t o u r i st s a l i ke , a h e r i t a g e c e n t re a n d e n h a n c e m e n t o f a ctiv it ie s in t h e dist ric t . T h e p ro p o sa l d et a i l e d s c h e m e s s u c h a s st re et f u r n i t u re , g ro u n d fin ish e s, g ra p h ic sig n a g e a n d n ig ht - l i g h t i n g t o e n r i c h t h e Ch i n a t own ex p e r i e n c e a n d t o e n c o u ra g e t h e a p p re c ia t io n o f t he h i st o r y, h e r i t a g e a n d a rc h i t e c t u re o f t h e d i st r i c t .
Published on Mar 8, 2018