BCA to update rules on building materials that reflect too much light

Shoppers in front of Paragon at Orchard Road. The Building and Construction Authority (BCA) will soon be updating its regulations to ensure that materials of building facades are not too dazzling to the eye. -- ST FILE PHOTO: TED CHEN
Shoppers in front of Paragon at Orchard Road. The Building and Construction Authority (BCA) will soon be updating its regulations to ensure that materials of building facades are not too dazzling to the eye. -- ST FILE PHOTO: TED CHEN

The Building and Construction Authority (BCA) will soon be updating its regulations to ensure that materials of building facades are not too dazzling to the eye.

Currently, glass is the only material covered by these requirements but more materials may fall under these requirements soon as building designs in Singapore are getting more complex and elaborate, National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan wrote on his blog on Thursday morning. Metal roofs, in particular, reflect a lot of light and have been cause for concern.

"In Singapore, we are...beginning to get some feedback on unwelcome glare from sunlight reflected from metal roof of other buildings", said Mr Khaw adding that one resident told him he had to wear sunglasses in his own home.

"With an increasing number of developers and architects exploring the use of less conventional materials, some form of check and balance is necessary so that design does not come at the cost of comfort and safety," said the Minister. The regulatory update will ensure that designs can be enjoyed by all without causing anyone inconvenience or hardship, he added.

Highly reflective materials on the facade of buildings was in the spotlight about a month ago when a driver in London complained that a skyscraper melted the side of his car which had been parked near the tower.

Journalists proved that the skyscraper really was the culprit by using the building's reflective rays to fry an egg nearby.