New Bidadari homes to sit amid lush gardens

Estate in city-fringe location will have 10ha park, lake and market square, among other things

Artist's impressions of Alkaff LakeView, one of the first three HDB projects to be launched in Bidadari, which will have views of the new Alkaff Lake.
Artist's impressions of Alkaff LakeView, one of the first three HDB projects to be launched in Bidadari, which will have views of the new Alkaff Lake. PHOTO: HOUSING AND DEVELOPMENT BOARD

The first Housing Board (HDB) projects in Bidadari, which will be launched this month, will feature lush greenery and social spaces, in line with the area's vision of being "a community in a garden".

Residents in the area will be able to visit a nearby market square and walk around a scenic park and lake.

The 10ha Bidadari Park will house the new Alkaff Lake, named after the Arab family that built the Alkaff Lake Gardens in the area in 1929.

The gardens closed after World War II.

The market square will also include a food court and bus interchange.

The first three residential projects - Alkaff CourtView, Alkaff LakeView and Alkaff Vista - will consist of 2,139 flats and be completed between 2019 and 2020.

They will feature pedestrian walkways flanked by social facilities and shops, roof gardens, elevated walkways and landscaped lift lobbies that extend out of the block facades for scenic views.

Alkaff CourtView will also have garden courtyards and a veranda for community activities.

Bidadari's green features extend to its "car-light" planning.

HDB urban planning director Lim Shu Ying said: "Residents can cycle safely and conveniently within the estate. We hope to encourage residents to use walking and cycling as alternative modes of transport rather than taking a car."

A 1.8km park connector, for instance, will provide a direct cycling route from Punggol to Kallang through the estate.

Car- and bicycle-sharing schemes, including special parking spaces, will also be provided.

Spanning 93ha, roughly the size of 150 football fields, Bidadari estate is bounded by Bartley Road, Sennett Estate, Upper Serangoon Road and Mount Vernon Road. The area will be eventually carved up into four districts, of which the Alkaff district is the largest.

Despite once being the site of a cemetery, Bidadari's central location in Toa Payoh town makes it one of the most anticipated sites in this month's bumper flat launch.

A total of 7,000 BTO flats in Bidadari, Bukit Batok, Choa Chu Kang, Hougang, Punggol and Sengkang will be available for selection. Another 5,000 balance units not sold in previous exercises will also be put up for sale.

Prices will only be revealed when the flats are launched but some property experts said they expect buyers to pay a premium for Bidadari due to the area's city-fringe location and nearby amenities.

The projects are within a five to 10 minute walk from Woodleigh and Potong Pasir MRT stations, and close to Cedar Primary School and Cedar Girls' Secondary School.

PropNex chief executive Mohamed Ismail Gafoor said the new flats might cost at least 20 per cent more than those in Sengkang or Punggol.

In the May BTO launch, prices for four-room flats in Punggol ranged from $284,000 to $350,000.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 16, 2015, with the headline 'New Bidadari homes to sit amid lush gardens'. Print Edition | Subscribe