Sunday, May 23, 2010

Flats' design reflects lifestyle change

We thank Ms Ng Yee Cheng for her feedback ('Design better drying areas', May 2).

Over the years, the design of HDB flats has changed in tandem with changes in Singaporeans' expectations and lifestyle.

HDB flats are no longer slab blocks with kitchen on one side and living room on the other. Taller flats are built and clustered around a lift core, with limited facade space open to direct sunlight.

As residents spend most of their time in their living room and bedrooms, our priority is to orientate these windows along the facade so that they can enjoy the best view and maximum lighting.

The trade-off is a kitchen and clothes-drying area that might be less exposed to direct sunlight. Nevertheless, these areas are designed to receive sufficient lighting and ventilation.

To ensure that the clothes-drying system continues to meet our residents' needs, we have also been reviewing and improving its design through the years.

For instance, as HDB blocks grow taller, with some 30 or 40 storeys high, the old bamboo pole holder no longer works safely for residents, especially under strong wind conditions. Hence, new flats come with a service yard, equipped with fixed parallel stainless steel laundry poles and a canopy against water dripping from above.

Cheong Kin Man
Deputy Director
(Design & Development)
Housing & Development Board

Source: Sunday Times, 23 May 2010

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