[url]http://www.straitstimes.com/archive/saturday/premium/money/story/bright-outlook-quiet-exclusive-zone-20141213[/url]

[B]HOT SPOT[/B]

[B][SIZE=5]Bright outlook for 'quiet, exclusive zone'[/SIZE][/B]

[B]Better transport, more jobs to boost appeal of Upper Thomson, Springside[/B]

Published on Dec 13, 2014 1:03 AM

By Rennie Whang


THE good times should be rolling for the Upper Thomson and Springside area, going by the Urban Redevelopment Authority's Master Plan 2014, say consultants.

Transportation looks likely to be a key catalyst. The Thomson-East Coast MRT Line, which will be ready in 2023, will allow residents to commute easily to Marina Bay and Woodlands, from which they can go to Malaysia.

The North South Expressway to be completed in 2020 will mean links from Woodlands, Sembawang, Yishun, Ang Mo Kio, Bishan and Toa Payoh to the central area.

Jobs are another factor. The creation of employment as part of the Woodlands Regional Centre plans will make the area more attractive for residential developments, said Ms Ong Choon Fah, DTZ South-east Asia chief operating officer.

"The accessibility and amenities coming to this area will be a game changer," she added.

The upcoming Brooks [email protected] will have about 153 terrace homes and 60 apartments. The project by Kallang Development was being previewed recently.

Phase 1 of the development, which will comprise about 39 five-bedroom terrace homes on sites of 3,477 sq ft to 4,058 sq ft, is likely to get its temporary occupation permit next December.

A 113,051 sq ft Government Land Sales site in Lorong Puntong, off Sin Ming Avenue, was won by China-based Nanshan Group in October. It can yield 280 homes.

Nearby Teacher's Estate, which will be near the Lentor MRT station on the Thomson-East Coast Line, is to be developed for landed, low- to medium- and high-rise private housing, mixed-use developments and shopping amenities, noted Ms Ong.

The Upper Thomson and Springside area is notable for its greenery. The 6ha Springleaf Nature Park opened last month on what was once part of a kampung called Chan Chu Kang Village.

Average prices in the Springside and Upper Thomson area have ranged from $727 per sq ft (psf) at Forest Hills condominium to $1,264 psf at Thomson Grand over the past year. Average monthly rents were from $2.10 psf at Hong Heng Mansions and Thomson View condominium to $4.70 psf at Meadows @ Peirce.

Even with increased housing supply, the area is expected to see continued demand from tenants, given that it has established itself as a quiet and fairly exclusive zone, said Mr Ong Kah Seng, R'ST Research director.

[email][email protected][/email]