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IMG 8965 Wiki Duxton.jpg
General information
Location Cantonment Road, Singapore
Coordinates 1°16′36″N 103°50′29″E / 1.27667°N 103.84139°E / 1.27667; 103.84139Coordinates: 1°16′36″N 103°50′29″E / 1.27667°N 103.84139°E / 1.27667; 103.84139
Status Completed
Groundbreaking April 2005
Constructed 2005-2009
Use Public Housing
Roof 156m, 511ft
Technical details
Floor count 50 storeys & basement carpark
Elevators 35
Cost S$279 million
Companies involved
Architect(s) Khoo Peng Beng,
Belinda Huang,
Sandy Ng,
Lim Khim Guan and
ARC Studio Architecture + Urbanism
Contractor Chip Eng Seng Corporation
Developer Housing and Development Board

The Pinnacle@Duxton (previously known as Duxton Plain Public Housing) is a 2.5 hectare residential complex along Cantonment Road, Singapore. Consisting of seven connected towers labelled 1A to 1G, each tower is 50 storeys in height. It is the tallest public housing project in Singapore.[1][2][3]



The Duxton Plain site was historically significant as the site of the first two ten-storey HDB blocks in the Tanjong Pagar area; amongst the oldest built by HDB.[4] The idea to redevelop Duxton Plain was put forward by Minister Mentor Lee Kwan Yew in August 2001.[5] Design proposals were required to commemorate the historical significance of the previous blocks as well as accommodate re-siting plaques commemorating the laying of the foundation stone on 15 March 1963, and the opening ceremony, on 10 April 1964 by the then Prime Minister Lee Kwan Yew.[6]


An International Architectural Design Competition was conducted by the Urban Redevelopment Authority on behalf of the Ministry of National Development between 8 August 2001 and 21 September 2001. 202 entries were eventually submitted by design agencies around the world. The following features were required for entry into the competition:

  • Design proposals were required to accommodate the adjacent Community Club, which was built by the People's Association in 1960 as part of the first batch of community centres, so that it formed part of the housing community.
  • Competitors were also required to put forward landscaping strategies that seamlessly extended the adjacent Duxton Plain Park horizontally and vertically into the development by incorporating rooftop and high-level sky gardens.
  • Designs were also required to be environmentally appropriate and able of creating a strong sense of ownership; the mature trees around the perimeter of the site, together with the Jambu Ayer and Nutmeg trees planted by MM Lee in November 1984 and 1989, were also required to be retained and integrated into the landscaped areas.
  • As a form of subsidised housing, proposals had to be cost-effective.

In order to maximise innovation, the design brief and technical requirements were kept to a minimum; only the minimum and mandatory requirements were specified.[6].


Winning design

The competition was eventually won by a Singapore architecture company, ARC Studio Architecture + Urbanism. The winning architects called their design 'sky houses, flying green' with a goal of giving residents simple and elegant solutions from necessarily low-cost materials. The design (which differed from what was actually constructed) consisted of seven 48-storey tower blocks laid out in the shape of a hook on a 2.5ha site and linked by skybridges on the third, 26th and 48th storeys.

The HDB was concerned about several features of the original design:-

  • boulevards of trees along its skybridges (fear of falling branches)
  • glass panels, instead of steel railings, for unimpeded views (some might faint); and
  • publicly accessible skybridges linking its seven tower blocks (security threats to residents).[7]

HDB set stringent standards for the construction, the design and finishes required for the tender veered towards private housing standards. Units at Pinnacle@Duxton were also more fully furnished than the average HDB project. The design exceeded standards of private condominiums so much that it caused concern amongst private developers regarding their future if public housing was developed in a similar manner.[3][8] The Housing and Development Board (HDB) had to reassure them that this project was a one-off special residential development.[9] Pinnacle@Duxton received high publicity by the media when it was launched in May 2004.

Subsequently, the S$279 million construction contract was awarded to Chip Eng Seng Corporation, the lowest of the bids submitted.[10] The foundation was laid by MM Lee.[11] Fully pre-cast methods were used during construction, which could be 10-15 per cent more expensive than the traditional way of pumping wet concrete all the way to the top. Pre-cast methods involve transporting moulded components to the site and hoisting them up onto the structure.[12 ]

Sales Launch

The showflat was launched on 29 May 2004 when HDB released 528 units under phase 1 of its Build-To-Order (HDB) system. Units quickly became oversubscribed with the HDB receiving more than 100 enquiries by telephone and e-mail even before sales began.[13 ] Originally set to be launched in phases, the HDB subsequently decided to release all the units for sale due to overwhelming response.[8] Pinnacle@Duxton currently holds the record for most expensive flat purchased directly from HDB; the most expensive unit was offered and purchased at a cost of S$646,000.

Block no No of units Floor Area (sqm) Internal Floor Area (sqm) Initial launched price ranges Remarks
Phase 1 - May 2004[14]
1C, 1D
93–97 m²
105–108 m²
90–93 m²
101–103 m²
$289,200 - $380,900
$345,100 - $439,400
During phase 1 & 2, a total of 616 five-room flats with a floor area of 105–108 m² and 1,232 four-room flats with a floor area of 93–97 m² were offered for sale. 79% of the units were sold by 14 September 2004.[15]
Phase 2 - Jun 2004[16]
1A, 1B, 1C, 1D, 1E, 1F, 1G
93–97 m²
105–108 m²
90–93 m²
101–103 m²
$288,400 - $392,100
$343,100 - $451,500
Balloting Ex. - Sep 2008[17]
1A, 1B, 1C, 1D, 1E, 1F, 1G
93–97 m²
105–108 m²
90–93 m²
101–103 m²
$457,000 - $555,000
$545,000 - $646,000
428 units were offered for balloting during the September 2008 HDB balloting exercise.

The key handing over ceremony was held on 13 December 2009, marking the completion of the project.[18]


All seven buildings are linked at the 26th and 50th floors by sky bridges forming a jogging track and sky garden, a feature that is unique for public housing in Singapore. Other facilities include a food centre, daycare centre, underground carpark and other sports and recreational facilities.

Buyers are able to choose their flat's layout from combinations of balconies, planter boxes and/or bay windows.[13 ] Also, the internal lightweight concrete walls can be easily removed and reconfigured by owners.[19 ]

New fire-safety regulations were also drawn up by the Singapore Civil Defence Force which involved the use of elevators during any evacuation. Pinnacle@Duxton is the first development to be affected by these regulations. Refugee floors and special firefighting points were also provided for under the new code.[20][21]


See also


  1. ^ HDB's tallest (maybe costliest) flats go on sale, The Straits Times, 29 May 2004
  2. ^ Longer wait for tallest HDB blocks, The Straits Times, 7 May 2004
  3. ^ a b Too stylo, complain condo developers, The New Paper, 2 June 2004
  4. ^ Update on the Duxton Plain Housing Development, Housing and Development Board, 5 December 2003
  5. ^ 建50层摩天组屋?, Lianhe Zaobao, 26 April 2004
  6. ^ a b Duxton Plain Public Housing International Architectural Design Competition, Urban Redevelopment Authority
  7. ^ The Pinnacle's architect on top of the world, The Straits Times, 4 July 2004
  8. ^ a b HDB's Pinnacle : A threat to private developers?, The Straits Times, 19 June 2004
  9. ^ 3,000 apply for 528 units, The New Paper, 14 June 2004
  10. ^ Chip Eng Seng wins contract to build The Pinnacle, The Business Times, 17 March 2005
  11. ^ New Heights, The Straits Times, 13 August 2005
  12. ^ Construction sector pins hopes on HDB's Pinnacle, The Business Times, 22 June 2004
  13. ^ a b When can I book a unit at The Pinnacle?, The Straits Times, 22 May 2004
  14. ^ HDB Press Release - Phase 1
  15. ^ HDB to proceed with construction of The Pinnacle@Duxton , Channel NewsAsia, 14 September 2004
  16. ^ HDB Press Release - Phase 2
  17. ^ Balloting Exercise- September 2008 balloting exercise
  18. ^ About The Pinnacle@Duxton on Pinnacle@Duxton
  19. ^ Property hunters, the wait is finally over, The Straits Times, 29 May 2004
  20. ^ Better fire safety for high-rise homes, The New Paper, 20 February 2006
  21. ^ Refuge floors among fire-safety measures, The Straits Times Forum, 20 December 2007

External links


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