Parliament: Debate on ministries’ budgets: National Development

2nd batch of assisted-living HDB flats to be launched - in Queenstown

Expansion of pilot to give seniors more options to age in place independently

Seniors who wish to live on their own and yet enjoy some care and communal activities will be able to apply for units in the second assisted-living public housing project, in Queenstown, later this year.

About 200 units will be offered in the second pilot of Community Care Apartments - a new senior-friendly flat type that comes with care services which can be customised according to individual needs. Seniors must be 65 and above to apply for these flats.

Minister of State for National Development Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim said yesterday during the debate on his ministry's budget that the expansion of the pilot is to provide more housing options for seniors to "age autonomously and gracefully in place". The first site in Bukit Batok - Harmony Village @ Bukit Batok - was launched in February last year and drew about four applicants for each unit.

To date, over 90 per cent of the 169 flats have been booked, said Associate Professor Faishal.

Community Care Apartments come with senior-friendly fittings such as grab bars and a wheelchair-accessible bathroom.

There will be communal spaces on each floor for residents to use as extensions of their own living rooms to interact and share meals with their neighbours, or participate in programmes curated by the community manager, said the Ministry of National Development and Housing Board in a joint statement yesterday. This is on top of other common facilities such as roof gardens, fitness stations and community living rooms to promote social interaction among residents.

Prof Faishal was responding to various MPs including Mr Xie Yao Quan (Jurong GRC), Ms Nadia Samdin (Ang Mo Kio GRC) and Mr Henry Kwek (Kebun Baru), who asked about efforts to help seniors age in place.

The upcoming project in Singapore's first and oldest satellite town, Queenstown, will sit within its health district, which is a pilot programme to support residents to lead healthier and more productive lives through integrated planning and design of the estate and more community-driven programmes. Other flat types will also be offered in the project.

The health district in Queenstown is bounded by Tanglin Road and Alexandra Road to the east and Clementi Road to the west.

Prof Faishal noted that Alexandra Hospital, which is in Queenstown, will allow medical and healthcare services to be seamlessly incorporated into the care model for residents.

A site for a private assisted-living facility in Parry Avenue in Kovan will be launched for sale by public tender later this year to give seniors even more housing options, he added. The facility can accommodate about 300 to 400 seniors.

Prof Faishal said: "We look forward to partnering the private sector to co-create new assisted-living housing products that will further enhance the quality of life for our ageing population."

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 09, 2022, with the headline 2nd batch of assisted-living HDB flats to be launched - in Queenstown. Subscribe