On the 24th July 2018, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) declared that it would begin to rezone sites surrounded by the Tiong Bahru estate from “residential apartment” to “commercial resident at the 1st storey.”.
According to URA, the estate has about 800 buildings and 120 approved businesses located at the first storey residential buildings. Also, more than 50 percent is land zoned ‘commercial resident at the 1st storey.”
Furthermore, there are 28 units on land zoned ‘residential,’ but they are used for businesses authorised by the agency in the past decades. Each unit has become an essential part of the estate and is mostly located within Eng Hoon Street and Eng Watt Street.
URA claimed to recognise these existing businesses and rezone the locations from ‘residential buildings’ to ‘commercial resident at 1st storey’ based on the community response that the residents are compassionate of the estate’s exciting character.
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URA assumed that “Rezoning the locations stated under the Master Plan where commercial uses are permitted in the estate will help to reinforce URA’s objective to support its vibrant landscape.” Also, it will help to recognise Tiong Bahru regions as residential estate”.
Also, it helps to improve the working relationship with some businesses that are operating in units meant for residential purposes.
‘URA are committed to improving affected business owners and operators/tenants to work together to solve the infringements problem.’