The announcement of the first smart-enabled public housing option in Singapore is in line with HDB properties to ensure greener and more sustainable living.
HDB first announced in 2018 that most new residential projects will come with either smart or green living features to encourage sustainability and to reduce utility expenditure. Designs derived from the concept of biophilia have been adopted ever since 2013. The aim of these residential designs was to enhance existing national resources and to ensure rational usage.
The Punggol Northshore District was one of the first to feature such green and sustainable features.
Upon the initial introduction of biophilic designs, HDB carried out extensive research in partnership with the Urban Redevelopment Authority, the National Parks Board and the National University of Singapore. Based on three years of analysis, further improvements were made to the concept.
Previously, in 2017, HDB announced that all future housing blocks with at least 400 square metres of roof space will be designed with solar-friendly installations. Once again, this is the infrastructure required for the placement and the functioning of solar panels for clean energy production.
Solar-ready roofs were first featured and tested out on Punggol Edge BTO projects in 2012. The construction of these solar-ready roofs was finalised in 2016. The implementation was completely successful, which prompted the HDB to increase the scope of the project and to seek for additional green, innovative and smart living installations in public housing projects.
The hardware and infrastructure-based approach reduces the amount of time needed to put together a system and to get it running. The associated costs are also brought down, making it easier for a wider range of residential property owners in Singapore to experiment with innovative technologies that guarantee better and greener living.
A final benefit of such infrastructure, whether sustainable or smart, is that it allows for the collection of key data.
Through the hardware that’s positioned in some projects and that will also be available in the first smart homes to be launched in 2020, the HDB will learn a lot more about tenant behaviours. Based on such information, additional smart solutions can be sought for community areas and the infrastructure that’s currently in place can be fine-tuned for future HDB developments.