Residents of Toa Payoh Residences can now enjoy various improvements within the estate. Upgrades include new planters, seating and rainwater harvesting systems, creating a more sustainable neighbourhood. The nearby hawker centre has also seen improvements such as repainting of the building, wider walkways and upgraded furnishings. The convenience of having a well-maintained food centre within the estate is a great boon to the residents.
In addition, a series of events were organised in the area to foster a sense of community. Residents participated in activities such as carolling, participating in the Christmas light-up ceremony and taking part in a Christmas lantern walk. All of these activities brought the community closer together and created a sense of unity.
The upgrades and efforts to build a close-knitted community are certainly appreciated by the residents of Toa Payoh Residences.
To foster a vibrant Arts and Culture scene in Toa Payoh Residences, a Heritage Corner will be set up in the town centre. This will showcase beloved architectural features, such as the iconic Dragon Playground and Block 53 (a Y-shaped block). Town planners are also committed to fostering a more inclusive and healthier future for residents by increasing the number of sheltered walkways and cycling paths. In addition, 1,200 dual-tier bicycle racks will be added to existing apartment blocks.
Toa Payoh Residences, situated at the centre of District 12, is steeped in history. Initially constructed in the 1960s, the satellite town was devised to house 250,000 people in 35,000 residential units. 40% of the buildings were set aside to be rental flats with one room, whilst the remaining units had two to three rooms.
The Toa Payoh Residences community was established with a $230 million construction budget, and offers 480 shops, as well as over 20 schools, markets, clinics, cinemas, community centres, hawker centres and places of worship.
Indeed, Toa Payoh Residences has come a long way since its Malay namesake, which refers to a “big swamp”. Now, it serves as a public housing estate for the first generation of Singapore citizens. Currently, the estate is home to an estimated 120,480 residents (as stated by the 2018 population census), and has become a lively and connected heartland hub.
This initiative will include the transformation of physical spaces and the introduction of an extensive network of new amenities and services to encourage community interaction and enhance the quality of life of the estate’s residents.
Over the next 10 years, HDB’s Remaking Our Heartland (ROH) programme will bring about substantial changes to nine estates across the city, including Toa Payoh Residences – a highly sought-after area in the central district. This scheme will involve the transformation of physical spaces, along with the incorporation of an extensive range of new facilities and services to promote community interaction and uplift the quality of life of the estate’s inhabitants.
As Toa Payoh is an important hub in Singapore, the revitalising and progressive redevelopment of Toa Payoh Residences is timely and in keeping with the government’s and urban planners’ vision of strengthening and shaping the core of Singapore’s suburbs. This renewal works to the advantage of all Toa Payoh Residences’ residents, allowing them to take part in Singapore’s urban transformation.
Two land sites at Toa Payoh Residences, one near Caldecott MRT Station on the Circle Line and the other in Toa Payoh East, next to Lian Shan Shuang Lin Monastery, will be redeveloped and span approximately 14 hectares. Over the coming decade, an anticipated 5,000 residential units will be constructed, alongside major refurbishments, such as a 4km nature-themed ring road connecting the Toa Payoh Town Park and swimming pool to the Braddell and Toa Payoh MRT stations.
Toa Payoh Residences is a mature town, with a significant proportion of its population (around 30%) being seniors aged 60 and above. Thus, to enhance the mobility of elderly citizens in this area, there are plans to install more ramps and handrails, as well as to level out the pavements.
The Residents’ Opportunities Hub (ROH) programme at Toa Payoh Residences will be rolled out in line with the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) Draft Master Plan 2019: Bishan-Toa Payoh. This draft master plan proposes a comprehensive plan to further enhance Toa Payoh Residences and make it more future-ready. The residents of the area will be reaping the benefits of this new plan, with the addition of new MRT stations, expanded healthcare services and integrated community hubs. All in all, it will create a more interconnected and well-developed central region town hub.
Markings on the streets of the designated Silver Zones at Toa Payoh Residences such as Lorong 5 and Lorong 8/8A will serve as reminders for pedestrians to look out for vehicles when they cross the roads, thus enhancing the safety of all. Moreover, the construction of new nursing homes and an expansion of Mount Alvernia Hospital’s wing will help to address the eldercare and healthcare needs of the community.
The “neighbourhood concept” of Toa Payoh Residences was first established to provide Toa Payoh Residences residents with a convenient area to shop and enjoy entertainment. The estate was organised into several neighbourhoods, with a town centre at its core. This was accompanied by a host of other local initiatives, such as the formation of Singapore’s first Residents’ Association, the debut of the cooperative supermarket NTUC Welcome (now known as NTUC FairPrice), as well as the opening of the first MRT Station.
The Toa Payoh Residences will be connected with town services through integrated community hubs, which will aim to satisfy the individual needs of the residents. These hubs will provide support to those seeking employment and create venues for residents to come together and bond through gatherings.