The Interlace wins the prestigious inaugural Urban Habitat Award
Multiple award-winning residential development also emerged as a finalist in Asia and Australasia’s Best Tall Building Award category
Singapore, 27 June 2014 – Developed by CapitaLand Singapore and Hotel Properties Limited, The Interlace, an iconic residential development at Depot Road, has been accorded the prestigious inaugural Urban Habitat Award given by the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH). Based at the Illinois Institute of Technology Chicago, the CTBUH is the world’s leading resource for professionals focused on the design, construction, and operation of tall buildings and future cities. Since 2002, the CTBUH issues nine Tall Building Awards annually to recognise projects which have made extraordinary contributions to the advancement of tall buildings and the urban environment, and that achieve sustainability at the highest and broadest level.
This is the first time the CTBUH introduced the international Urban Habitat Award to recognise projects that contribute positively to the surroundings, enhance the sustainability of the environment, and possess designs that are aligned with their surroundings both environmentally and culturally. Designed by the world-renowned OMA/ Ole Scheeren, this architectural masterpiece was also a finalist in the Asia & Australasia’s Best Tall Building Award category. Past year winners of the Asia & Australasia’s Best Tall Building Award included the world-renowned Beijing CCTV Headquarters, which was also designed by OMA, and the Pinnacle@Duxton in Singapore.
The Interlace has stood out with its iconic design that complements the surroundings as well as its innovative concept of spaces and community, and emphasis on sustainability and universal design. The 1,040-unit development breaks away from the conventional typology of high-rise housing in Singapore – clusters of isolated, vertical towers – and features 31 super blocks, each six stories tall, stacked in a hexagonal arrangement around eight large-scale courtyards. These interlocking blocks resemble a ‘vertical village’ with cascading sky gardens and roof terraces, with extensive amenities and facilities being interwoven into lush vegetation. With such expansive greenery and landscaping, the project is at home on the nine-kilometre long green belt that stretches along Kent Ridge, Telok Blangah Hill and Mount Faber parks. Based on a series of environmental studies, the units, facilities, vegetation and water bodies are strategically positioned to maximise shading and reduce urban heat gain, thereby providing a cooling and naturally ventilated environment.
While maintaining privacy with its huge pockets of spaces and deliberate positioning of the apartments, this eight-hectare development also offers plenty of opportunities for community bonding and shared activities through its amenities such as the numerous pools, sun decks, communal gardens, themed courtyards, barbeque areas, karaoke rooms, play areas, a one kilometre-long jogging track, and theatrettes equipped with sound systems from Dolby and Digital Theatre Systems. The project also demonstrates a strong dedication to universal design with its 131 units that come with ageing-in-place provisions, and 16 dual-key units or connected apartments which will serve the needs of multi-generation families by allowing them to live close to one another and also enjoy some privacy.
Given the huge size of the development covering approximately 870,000 square feet, features such as a prominent Y-Axis pathway that sweeps through the site helps to orientate residents on the ground. A large central water feature which is easily visible from various locations in the development enhances navigation. Distinct landscape features and sculptures by renowned artists give each space a unique identity, and of a scale that residents and visitors can easily relate to.
Mr Wong Heang Fine, Chief Executive Officer of CapitaLand Singapore (Residential), said: “We are very proud that our most recently completed iconic residential development The Interlace has won the prestigious inaugural Urban Habitat Award by the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat. It is also shortlisted as a finalist in the Asia & Australasia’s Best Tall Building Awards category. With our strong domain knowledge in the Singapore residential property market, we partnered Office for Metropolitan Architecture/ Ole Scheeren, whom are internationally acclaimed for their innovative design concepts, and appointed RSP Architects Planners & Engineers (Pte) Ltd and Woh Hup (Private) Limited as the project architect and main contractor respectively. Together, we envisaged The Interlace to be an iconic urban habitat of the future, and successfully transformed it into one with its breathtaking and unique architectural design, creative use of spaces, strategic positioning of the apartments and facilities, lush greenery, universal design features and beautiful sculptures by famous artists. On top of that, we wanted to create a development that does not just provide spaces for private retreats and residential living, but also one that will facilitate social interaction and create a community within. With our strong partnership, commitment and belief, the vision and ideas that we have for The Interlace have since been translated into reality. These prestigious accolades have placed this iconic, multiple-award winning landmark in Singapore on the international platform, and affirmed the great teamwork and efforts by our partners, consultants, and staff.”
Mr Wong added: “A good land site is like an unpolished diamond, and in order to bring out its brilliance, a high-quality setting and the fine skills of an artisan are required. This is the mentality that we have for all our residential projects in Singapore. We set out to create iconic projects with outstanding designs that are not only within reach of those who aspire to own private residential home units, but also those who aspire to lead a unique lifestyle. The Interlace is one of such exemplary developments. We are now looking forward to the completion of our other admirable and stunning landmarks such as d’Leedon and Sky Habitat, which are also designed by star architects and yet reasonably priced for the targeted buyers.”
The Interlace has received several other awards and certifications, including the Universal Design Mark Platinum Award and Green Mark GoldPLUS Awards, Landscape Excellence Assessment Framework Certification, Active Beautiful, and Clean Waters Certification, Design and Engineering Safety Excellence (Residential) Award, Safety and Health Award Recognition for Projects Award as well as Best Architecture (Multiple Units) Singapore.
ANNEX: Factsheet of The Interlace
About The Interlace
The Interlace is one of the largest and most ambitious residential developments in Singapore. It sits on an elevated 81,000 square metre, 99-year leasehold site bounded by Alexandra Road and Ayer Rajah Expressway. The site completes a nine-kilometre long green belt that stretches between the Kent Ridge, Telok Blangah Hill and Mount Faber parks. With about 170,000 square metres of gross floor area, the development offers 1,040 apartment units of varying sizes with extensive outdoor spaces and landscaping.
The Interlace breaks away from the standard typology of residential developments in Singapore which typically comprise a cluster of isolated, vertical towers. Instead, its design explores a dramatically different approach to tropical living with an expansive and interconnected network of communal spaces with the natural environment.
Thirty-one apartment blocks, each six stories tall, are stacked in a hexagonal arrangement to form eight large-scale courtyards. The interlocking blocks resemble a ‘vertical village’ with cascading sky gardens and both private and public roof terraces. Extensive residential amenities and facilities are interwoven into the lush vegetation and offer opportunities for social interaction, leisure, and recreation within the green terrain.
Multi-storey openings allow light and air to weave into the architecture and through the landscape of the courtyards. Sustainable features are incorporated throughout the project through careful environmental analysis and integration of low-impact passive energy strategies.
The Interlace generates multiple spaces and opportunities for social interaction and shared activities while providing intimate spaces – simultaneously fostering a sense of community yet maintaining individuality and privacy.
The notion of community life within a contemporary village is emphasised by an extensive network of public amenities interwoven into the lush vegetation. These amenities include numerous pools and sun decks, children’s playgrounds, barbeque areas, communal gardens, feature courtyards, performance spaces and a 1km long jogging loop which invisibly doubles as the fire truck access while connecting the ‘internal’ courtyards to the other amenities.
The Interlace places great emphasis on universal design. It features 131 age-in-place units where there are no drops within the unit. There are also 16 dual-key units which provide connected apartments which will serve the needs of multi-generation families well by allowing them to live close to one another and yet enjoy some privacy. Communal areas have been sensitively designed and well-detailed to facilitate orientation and easy movement throughout the development. With this commitment to high accessibility and notion of community, The Interlace has been awarded the highest accolade for Universal Design by the Building Construction Authority in Singapore.
Following its completion in late September 2013, a large-scale Temporary Occupation Permit party was organised for some 1,500 home-owners and their family members and friends. This was instrumental in fostering a strong sense of community where all who share the vision of The Interlace could come together to celebrate.
Eight courtyards and their individual landscapes are defined as the heart of the project and form distinct spatial identities within the building blocks.
The primary pedestrian route leads residents from the main entrance through and to the courtyards as primary points of orientation and identification. Pedestrian circulation is grouped and bundled according to the density of residents around each courtyard in a central ‘connector’. A system of secondary footpaths brings residents on the most direct route from the connector to their apartments.
The unusual geometry of the hexagonally stacked building blocks creates a dramatic spatial structure. Partly resting, partly floating, the blocks hover on top of each other to form open, permeable courtyards that interconnect with one another, the surrounding landscape and the city. An expressive, interlaced space emerges that connects the multiple parts of the development into an open, inclusive community.
A system of three core types for six, 18, and 24 stories is located where the stacked apartment blocks overlap. Cores typically serve three to four different units per floor, which provides efficient circulation without long corridors. Core lobbies are naturally lit and ventilated, bringing daylight and fresh air into common areas. Circular “mega-columns” arranged around the vertical circulation in an optimised hexagonal configuration enable the three-way rotation of the blocks and provide a standard solution for all conditions.
A series of site specific environmental studies were carried out and evaluated (wind, solar and daylight analysis) to determine intelligent strategies for the building envelope and landscape design. Early and comprehensive incorporation of low-impact passive energy strategies allowed the project to be given the Green Mark GoldPlus Award by Singapore’s Building and Construction Authority.
All apartments receive generous amounts of daylight throughout the day while the unique massing of the project provides a sufficient level of self-shading in the courtyards which helps maintain comfortable outdoor spaces year-round and continuous usage of the courtyards and their communal functions.
Water bodies have been strategically placed within well-defined wind corridors. This allows evaporative cooling to happen along wind paths, reducing local air temperatures and improving the thermal comfort of outdoor recreation spaces in strategic micro-climate zones.
Extensive balconies and protruding terraces form a cascading vertical landscape across the facades and further connect the green roofs and shared public terraces between the building volumes. Overall, the project appears not only surrounded by the tropical vegetation but embedded within it.
All traffic and parking is accommodated in a single layer below the landscaped ground level. A large number of open-air voids allow light and air to the semi-sunken parking deck, creating areas of lush vegetation and trees below ground and connecting these spaces visually and through planting to the courtyards above.
The landscape design capitalises on the generous size of the eight-hectare site and further maximises the green area and presence of nature. By stacking the apartment blocks, the design has generated additional horizontal surfaces and thereby the opportunity for extensive roof gardens and numerous landscaped public terraces that in aggregate provide even more overall green area than the size of the original site.
Buyers have a choice of unit types including two-, three-, three-plus-one and four-bedroom apartments, penthouses and garden townhouses. These units range from 75 sqm to 586 sqm in size (about 807 sq ft to 6,307 sq ft), and offer multi-directional views overseeing the parks, courtyards, city skyline and sea.
The Interlace is centrally located and readily accessible to several leisure and business hubs as well as transport connections. It is a five-minute drive to VivoCity, and Resorts World Sentosa, a 10-minute drive to the Central Business District and 15-minute drive to Orchard Road. The development is accessible via the Ayer Rajah Expressway and West Coast Highway, as well as the Queenstown, Redhill, HarbourFront and Labrador Park MRT stations.
Retail, entertainment and office facilities in the vicinity include VivoCity, St James Power Station entertainment hub, HarbourFront, IKEA and Anchorpoint Shopping Centre. For nature lovers, the development is within walking distance to the HortPark which is a national park connected to the Southern Ridges, Telok Blangah Hill Park and Kent Ridge Park. The West Coast Park, another recreational area is about a 15-minute drive away.
Educational institutes in the area include ISS International School (American College), National University of Singapore, United World College, Anglo-Chinese Junior College, Anglo-Chinese Independent School, INSEAD and Crescent Girls' School.
The condominium provides a full suite of recreational facilities, including the clubhouse, a jogging track, tennis courts, outdoor exercise stations, play zones, party pavilions and a BBQ promenade. The eight large-scale, landscaped courtyards on the grounds comprise a Central Square, Water Park (50-metre lap pool, children’s pool, family pool and Jacuzzi pool), Play Hills, Spa Valley, Theatre Plaza, Bamboo Garden, Lotus Pond and Waterfall Terrace (reflective pool and party pool).
Urban Habitat Award (Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, 2014)
Finalist in Asia and Australasia’s Best Tall Building Award category (Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, 2014)