|Location||Cantonment Road, Singapore|
|Construction started||April 2005|
|Roof||156 m (512 ft)|
|Floor count||50 storeys & basement carpark|
|Design and construction|
|Architect||Khoo Peng Beng,
Lim Khim Guan and
ARC Studio Architecture + Urbanism
in Collaboration with
RSP Architects, Planners & Engineers (Pte) Ltd
|Developer||Housing and Development Board|
|Main contractor||Chip Eng Seng Corporation|
The project consists of seven connected 50-storey towers, labelled 1A to 1G, with a total of 1,848 units. Unique amongst Housing and Development Board (HDB) developments, these units are designated as special types, S1 and S2, having altogether 35 different unit variations for buyers to choose from – with dissimilar combinations of features such as extended bays, balconies, bay windows and planter areas.
The Pinnacle@Duxton features the world's two longest sky gardens of 500 metres (1,600 ft) each, on both the 26th and 50th floors. All seven towers are the world's tallest public housing buildings.
On 8 August 2010, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong delivered his annual National Day message on the 51st-floor viewing gallery of The Pinnacle@Duxton. Also, owing to the sky gardens' popularity as an elevated viewing location for National Day firework displays on 9 August, entry for the day was publicly balloted.
The Duxton Plain site is historically significant as the site of the first two ten-storey HDB blocks in the Tanjong Pagar area and amongst the oldest built by the HDB in the country. The idea to redevelop Duxton Plain was put forward by Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew in August 2001, to commemorate the historical significance of the previous blocks.
The following features were required for entry into the competition:
In order to maximise innovation, the design brief and technical requirements were kept to a minimum, with mainly the mandatory requirements specified.
The competition was keenly contested with 202 entries submitted by design agencies around the world.
It was eventually won by two Singapore architecture companies, ARC Studio Architecture + Urbanism, in collaboration with RSP Architects Planners & Engineers (Pte) Ltd. 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 2.5-ha site and linked by skybridges on the 26th and 50th storeys.
The HDB did expressed concern about several features of the original design:
Eventually, some features were modified. Notably, one additional elevated observation and event room was added on the 52nd floor at tower 1C, likely for the purpose of catering to visiting VIPs.
HDB set stringent standards for the construction, the design and finishes required for the tender veered towards private housing standards. Units at The 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. The HDB had to reassure them that this project was a one-off special residential development. The Pinnacle@Duxton received much publicity in 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. The foundation was laid by MM Lee. 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 on to the structure.
The showflat was launched on 29 May 2004 when HDB released 528 units under phase 1 of its Build-To-Order system. Units quickly became oversubscribed with the HDB receiving more than a hundred enquiries by telephone and e-mail even before sales began. Originally set to be launched in phases, the HDB subsequently decided to release all the units for sale due to overwhelming response.
The Pinnacle@Duxton project holds the record for the highest average price of new flats purchased directly from HDB, as well as the most expensive unit offered and purchased at $646,000.
The key handing over ceremony was held on 13 December 2009, marking the completion of the project.
All seven buildings are linked at the 26th and 50th floors by skybridges 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 car park 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. Also, the internal lightweight concrete walls can be easily removed and reconfigured by owners.
New fire-safety regulations were also drawn up by the Singapore Civil Defence Force which involved the use of elevators during any evacuation. The 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.
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