AWARDS: Artra scores on layout design and balcony space

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October 16, 2018 5:06 PM SGT
Artra’s 21,500 sq ft sales gallery is designed to look like a contemporary art gallery (Credit: Samuel Isaac Chua/ The Edge Singapore)
Artra, a mixed-use project on Alexandra View, won the Top Development category at the EdgeProp Singapore Excellence Awards on Oct 3. The development, next to Redhill MRT station, comprises 400 residential units and 16 commercial lots. It is developed by FEC Skyline, a joint venture between Hong Kong-listed Far East Consortium International and New World Development Co.
The 99-year leasehold development had its official launch in April last year. FEC Skyline sold 130 units, or 65% of 200 units released in just one day. As at end-September 2018, the project was close to 77% sold (307 units), according to Alice Tan, director of residential project marketing at Knight Frank. The average price fetched at Artra was $1,650 psf in April 2017; it has now risen 11.2% to $1,835 psf for the duration of April to September 2018, according to caveats lodged with URA.
Tan attributes Artra’s popularity among buyers to the “unique” layout of the units. Instead of the regular rectangular layout in most developments, some of the units at Artra have a gradual slant to their shape. This, however, does not result in tight angles in the unit, but is “comfortable and functional”, she explains. FEC had in fact carved out the triangular space as storage spaces, hiding the odd angles behind cabinets.
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Alice Tan of Knight Frank attributes Artra’s popularity among buyers to the unique layout of its units
In addition, FEC has designed the layouts such that units appear more spacious than their actual sizes. For the three-bedroom units, the balcony area was stretched across at least two rooms — a combination of either the master bedroom, dining area, or living room. In the largest of the three-bedder offerings, the balcony is spread across all three spaces. Meanwhile, homeowners who purchased the largest unit — the five-bedroom unit of 2,583 sq ft — will have expansive views from the balcony, as it stretches across two bedrooms and the living and dining space. “At first glance, some people might think the unit looks really huge, but if you think about it, that’s only because of the way we’ve arranged the layout,” says Derrick Tan, design director at FEC, who was part of the team that designed Artra.
At the development, the residential units start from the third floor and range from two-bedroom units of 786 to 829 sq ft and three-bedders of 1,044 to 1,410 sq ft, to five-bedroom units of 2,583 sq ft. There are only six five-bedroom units at Artra.
The open-concept living and dining rooms at the Artra showflat (Credit: Samuel Isaac Chua/ The Edge Singapore)
Units with private lift lobbies were designed with two entrances. The main entrance opens to the living and dining area, while the side entrance opens to the kitchen and utility room. With this layout, homeowners can enter the kitchen after doing their grocery runs without having to step into the living room, says FEC’s Tan.
There were several considerations FEC had to take into account for Artra. For instance, the residential blocks had to be set back as far away as possible from the MRT station to minimise noise from the trains, Tan says. There will also be an “acoustic canopy” that will serve as both a sound barrier and sheltered walkway from Redhill MRT station to the development. To ensure the privacy of residents, large and leafy trees will be planted next to the pool.
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The ‘acoustic canopy’ serves as both a sound barrier and sheltered walkway from Artra to the MRT station (Credit: Samuel Isaac Chua/ The Edge Singapore)
Homeowners with children at Artra will be able to enjoy the convenience of having a childcare centre. Situated on the second level of the development and taking up 5,380 sq ft of space, it caters for 100 children. The developers have also provided a 1,076 sq ft children’s playground that links to the childcare centre.
As the commercial component of Artra is on level one, residents will not need to leave the development to get groceries or a meal. A supermarket will occupy 10,760 sq ft of space at the development. The retail components have been earmarked for F&B purposes, Tan says.