Drones will soon take to the skies in one-north, a research and development hub in Buona Vista which was unveiled as Singapore's first drone estate in an announcement on Monday (Feb 5).
The initiative aims to provide companies and research institutions with an urban environment for test-bedding innovative unmanned aircraft systems.
One-north is a 2 sq km development by JTC Corporation which combines educational institutes, residences, recreational amenities and research facilities to grow a "work-live-play-learn" environment.
It focuses on three industries: biomedical sciences, infocommunications and media, and financial and business services.
Besides drones, here are other innovative projects that have sprung up in one-north:
1. Driverless taxis
Boston-based and Singapore Government-funded nuTonomy has been testing driverless vehicles in one-north since April 2016, with plans to roll out driverless taxis here by the middle of this year.
In September 2016, the length of test routes was doubled from 6km to 12km.
However, a month later, a self-driving car hit a lorry in Biopolis Drive while on a test drive.
nuTonomy found that the accident, said to be the first in Singapore involving an autonomous vehicle, was due to "an extremely rare combination of software anomalies".
The test area for driverless cars in one-north was further expanded in June last year to include the National University of Singapore, Singapore Sciences Park 1 and 2, Dover and Buona Vista. The trial route now covers some 55km.
2. Housekeeping and food butler robots
Park Avenue Rochester Hotel & Suites is the first hotel in Singapore to introduce robots to boost productivity.
The business hotel currently has two robots for housekeeping and F&B operations.
"Robie" assists in housekeeping operations and helps to save around 19.3 man-hours daily, roughly equivalent to 3.5 full-time.
On the other hand, "Cobie" the robotic food butler is able to deliver room service to up to three rooms per trip.
The hotel has also deployed two IT systems to optimise its back-of-house operation.
3. Fenceless condominium
One North Residences in Buona Vista is the only fenceless condominium in land-scarce Singapore.
Built in 2009, the condominium features boundaries of vegetation rather than fences. Members of the public can freely use its outdoor plaza as well as visit retail outlets on the ground floors of the residential blocks.
Residents enter lift lobbies to homes via access cards.
Since then, the Urban Redevelopment Authority has issued a number of tenders for residential developments with "visually porous" designs, as a push towards getting more developers to explore more of such fenceless condominiums.
4. Model factory to test manufacturing operations
A 6,500 sq ft model factory, featuring a "live" shop floor where manufacturers can test operations before rolling out changes at their own factories, was opened in October last year (2017).
The shop floor will be able to demonstrations and hands-on training for companies - especially small and medium-sized enterprises.
Industry partners will also be able to use the production line as a research and development test bed.