Singapore looks skyward...

07 Dec 2011

UNStudio goes vertical as they seek a solution to maximising urban living potential

UNStudio aimed high as they attempted to redefine common practice on city planning, with their Singapore situated residential tower. With an ever-burgeoning population and an intense stress on producing enough urban housing the Scotts Tower provides a logical, efficient solution to help ease these demands. Desiring to conserve space whilst maximising live, work and play areas, imaginations turned skywards as they sought out an untouched arena in which to construct.

Lead architect, Ben van Berkel, described his creation’s distinction thus: "An interesting facet of The Scotts Tower is the way that it reacts to the urban context of Singapore. Instead of the more usual means of planning a city horizontally, we have created neighbourhoods in the sky; a vertical city where each zone has its own distinct identity."

The 18,500 sq m, 32-storey building was the first completed success created under the Far East Organisation’s new SOHO brand. Containing 231 units in total, ranging from 1 bedroom apartments to 4 bedroom penthouses, the tower aims to appeal to a diverse mix of prospective buyers of varying means. One of the motivating ideals behind the project was to imbue this lone structure with the feel of a condensed district; to inspire a communal spirit. The vertical city concept saw interpretive divisions dissecting the complete into three independent scales; namely the ‘city’, the ‘neighbourhood’, and the ‘home’, whilst residential blockings provide unique bonding within all inhabitants.

The interior of many of the apartments has been purposefully left largely blank and unblemished, allowing room for individual tastes and preferences, of the buyers themselves, to take hold. Units come in differing types and scales, with no standard distribution of outdoor space either, rejecting the notion of uniformity. Whilst attaining an array of panoramic cityscape views, from personal balconies, or the shared 25th floor sky terrace, an unlikely opportunity is equally afforded to relax amongst patches of vegetation.

At the building’s peak is cultivated a small rooftop garden, for a lucky select number to enjoy. The ‘sky garden’, one of two sky frame terraces, has been introduced above the third cluster of apartments, where, with the obligatory stunning viewpoint, can be obtained free use of Jacuzzi pools, a swimming pool and a dining deck.

Available to all, including non-residents, will be an expansive extension to a nearby green area, allowing its progression right up to the tower’s base. Incorporated into this multi-layered environment will be recreational facilities, such as: a 50m lap pool with sunning deck, a children’s pool, a wellness pool, dining & BBQ pavilions and massage and gym pavilions. All clear examples of the promoted fusion of activity and social platform that runs throughout Scotts Tower.

Tom Aston

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