Due to its small size and scarcity of land, Singapore is faced with serious space constraints. As such, commercial buildings are zoned in specific areas to ensure they optimise land use and can meet demand for office spaces. Singapore’s central region has the highest concentration of such commercial areas with an estimated 15 million sq m of commercial space. In 10 to 15 years time, another 7.8 million sq m of commercial space will be added in various parts of Singapore such as the upcoming Jurong Lake District and Paya Lebar Central. Within the central area itself, commercial buildings have been zoned to suit the corresponding demand for office spaces and the overall masterplan by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA).
The Central Business District (CBD), for instance, has been zoned specifically for high-rise, high-density office towers due to the great demand for prime Grade ‘A’ office space. To further support Singapore's continuing growth as a major business and financial hub in the region, the New Downtown in the Marina Bay area has been chosen as the new commercial and lifestyle hub that will consist of residential, office, and commercial developments, as well as many entertainment outlets and attractions to inject life into the area. Some of the completed as well as upcoming prime Grade ‘A’ office spaces there includes One Raffles Quay, One Marina Boulevard, Marina Bay Financial Centre and Asia Square.
The URA has also made plans to develop more commercial spaces outside the city area so that more people will be able to work closer to home. Some of the new growth areas that the URA has identified include the Jurong Lake District and Paya Lebar Central – both of which will be completed in the next 10 to 15 years.
The Jurong Lake District will be made up of two precincts, Jurong Gateway and Lakeside, served by two major expressways and three MRT stations. When completed in the next 10 to 15 years, the district will offer a potential development area of 360 hectares, about the size of Marina Bay. The Jurong Gateway is located in the Jurong East area and will comprise over 750, 000 sq m of land for offices, hotels, food and beverage, and entertainment uses. This is roughly two-and-a-half times the size of Tampines Regional Centre and is expected to attract billions of dollars in investment. There will be also an integrated transport hub with a new bus interchange and improved MRT station. For instance, once renovation works for Jurong East MRT station is completed, it will offer seamless connection to new office and residential buildings, just next to it. Some 2, 800 hotel rooms will also be added in the new district in anticipation of more visitors.
Paya Lebar Central will be a bustling commercial hub comprising offices, hotels, retail and attractive public spaces with seamless connection to the Paya Lebar MRT station. The area now consists of about 12 ha of available land for development. When completed, it will offer about 500, 000 sq m of commercial floor space, including retail, hotel and office developments clustered around Tanjong Katong Road and Sims Avenue. There will also be a new public plaza next to the Paya Lebar MRT Interchange, which will become a focal point for activities and a gathering spot for commuters, shoppers and the office crowd.
Other commercial sites that the URA has identified include Kallang Riverside, one-north as well as new transitional offices at Newton and Mountbatten. These transitional offices will help meet the current high demand for office space in the city fringe areas by providing office space on short-term leases.