Mixed Developments: The Future of Urban Living in Bugis and Downtown Core

Bugis is a subzone of the Downtown Core planning area. Its name is derived from the Buginese or Bugis people. These skilled seafarers from South Sulawesi, a province in Indonesia, were reputed to have sailed up to the area to trade with local merchants before the British arrived on the island. It is surrounded by Rochor on its north-western boundary, Kampong Glam, and Kallang to its north and City Hall to its south and west.
The area is synonymous in most people’s minds with Bugis Street, as it was through that, that the area came into prominence. In the post-war period, hawker stalls and outside bars began to set up along the street, and by the 1950s it had become a popular place to hang out. It also started to attract the island’s community of transvestites, who made it their go-to place to meet. In turn, their presence – in increasingly large numbers and flamboyant attire – started to attract hordes of Western tourists, drawn by the glitz and the glamour, not to mention the alcohol and local food. As a result, Bugis became the tourist destination in Singapore, with nightly parades and impromptu, risqué rooftop shows and performances.
However, the government became increasingly concerned that the activities in Bugis were tarnishing its hard-fought-for reputation, and as part of major development work, the street itself was torn up and replaced by shopping malls. Today, Bugis is a bustling place, particularly at weekends, but the visitors are almost entirely locals.
Bugis has many things, but surprisingly lacks residential properties in its locality. In fact, there are no HDB flats or landed properties in the entire area. Thus to make up for that, two impressively big and newly built developments came about; the latter being in Cityhall but still close enough to Bugis, that it warrants a mention.
Duo Residences and Parkview. Credit EdgeProp: Singapore
Duo Residences is a mixed development by M+S Pte Ltd located at 1 Fraser Street. It is across the road from one of the more distinctive buildings in Singapore – Parkview Square. Faced with such competition for attention, the highly...