Provence Residence banks on Canberra’s development wave

/ EdgeProp Singapore
November 3, 2021 6:27 PM SGT
Provence Residence comprises nine blocks with a total of 413 units (Credit: Samuel Isaac Chua/The Edge Singapore)
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SINGAPORE (EDGEPROP) - A lot has changed in Canberra in the last decade. This residential estate nestled between Sembawang and Yishun in northern Singapore has seen a steady progression in development, with more public and private housing projects cropping up in recent years.
The opening of Canberra MRT Station on the North-South Line in early November 2019 has spurred further growth in the area. The station was followed by the opening of neighbourhood mall Canberra Plaza in 2020, offering more amenities and eateries to the growing community.
The opening of Canberra MRT Station in 2019 has spurred further growth in the area (Credit: Samuel Isaac Chua/The Edge Singapore)
The developments are part of a wider push by the government to establish the Sembawang area. Upcoming projects include the NorthSouth Corridor, an expressway that will shorten commuting time to the city area; the Bukit Canberra integrated sport and community hub; and the Woodlands Health Campus which will offer integrated healthcare facilities.
Sembawang Shipyard has also been earmarked for redevelopment. Once shipyard operations cease, the site could potentially be repurposed into a mixed-use waterfront lifestyle precinct, according to the URA Master Plan.
With all these plans in the pipeline, Canberra appears set to evolve into a thriving residential estate.

Healthy demand

The last two years have seen a few residential projects launched in Canberra, such as Parc Canberra, a 496-unit executive condominium (EC) launched in February 2020 by Hoi Hup Realty and Sunway Developments; and The Watergardens at Canberra, a 99-year leasehold condo launched in August this year by UOL, Singapore Land and Kheng Leong Co. (Discover insightful data of any Singapore condominium with our condo directory)
Healthy take-up rates for these launches indicate robust demand that has been sustained even throughout the pandemic. For example, Parc Canberra saw 64% of its 496 units snapped up during its launch weekend. Today, the project is nearly sold out, with only one unit left for sale.
Meanwhile, The Watergardens at Canberra saw 60% of its 448 units sold during its launch weekend in August.
MCC Land’s Provence Residence, a 99-year leasehold EC located on Canberra Crescent, has seen a similarly encouraging response following its launch in May. “In just five months, about 80% of the units at Provence Residence have been sold. We are extremely heartened by this stellar sales momentum,” says a spokesperson for MCC Land.
Interestingly, while about 40% of buyers have already been living in the northern region, the remaining 60% come from other parts of Singapore, signifying the growing interest in the area.

Affordable entry point

MCC Land attributes Provence Residence’s strong take-up rates to its location near the MRT station, as well as the pent-up demand for ECs in the northern region.
The development’s affordable pricing compared to condos and other ECs in the market is another factor for its popularity. During its initial launch period, prices for three-bedroom units started from $890,000 while prices for four-bedroom units started from $1.58 million. According to the developer, about 51% of the buyers are first-timers, and 49% second-timers.
George Wang, district division director at ERA Realty Network, notes that currently, outstanding units at Provence Residence start from around $1 million for three-bedders and from $1.65 million for four-bedders. “These prices are good entry points for HDB upgraders looking to kickstart their private property journey,” he said during an ERA-EdgeProp webinar on Nov 1.
Doris Ong, COO of project marketing at ERA, echoes the sentiment. She reckons there is still a 15% to 25% price gap between new EC projects like Provence Residence and 99- year leasehold condos in the same area. This provides more choices for first-time home buyers with different budgets and lifestyle requirements, she adds.

Modern French design

MCC Land says that buyers have also been enticed by Provence Residence’s distinct French theme. The project, which comprises five 13-storey blocks and four 11-storey blocks, integrates French architectural and design elements, such as French-style courtyards, a muted colour palette of black, white and gray, and the use of classically French motifs such as Breton stripes.
Units at Provence Residence are made up of three- and four-bedroom apartments of 883 to 1,399 sq ft.
Units at Provence Residence - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
Units at Provence Residence comprise three- and four-bedders of 883 to 1,399 sq f (Credit: Samuel Isaac Chua/The Edge Singapore)
Facilities at Provence Residence are divided into two zones: the Royal French Court and the Countryside Gardens. The Royal French Court features facilities such as a 50m lap pool, a gym, a topiary walk, and a function room. The Countryside Gardens will be thoughtfully curated with landscaping, plants, and semi-private gardens that offer serene outdoor spaces for residents to hold small gatherings. There is also a roof terrace and sky lounge for residents to enjoy.
Residents will have access to nearby nature attractions such as the Mandai Mangrove and Mudflat Nature Park, Kranji Marshes and Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve. ERA’s Ong adds that besides catering to nature lovers, the low-density nature of the northern region also makes it appealing for cyclists.
Provence Residence is scheduled to receive its temporary occupation permit in 2025.
The 50m lap pool at Provence Residence - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
The 50m lap pool at Provence Residence (Credit: MCC Land)

Established track record in the north

MCC Land is the property development arm of Chinese state-owned enterprise China Metallurgical Group Corp. It has a construction arm that has built HDB projects including the 1,528-unit Sunshine Gardens in Choa Chu Kang, the 856-unit Punggol Emerald and the 745-unit Anchorvale Horizon in Sengkang. (Find HDB flats for rent or sale with our Singapore HDB directory)
Following the group’s foray into property development in 2010, MCC Land launched its maiden EC project in the north, namely the 406-unit The Canopy at Yishun Avenue 11. The 99-year leasehold EC was completed in 2014. This was followed by more projects in the Yishun-Sembawang area, namely the 99-year leasehold condo Canberra Residences with 320 units, as well as a second EC project, the 665-unit One Canberra.
Provence Residence offers serene outdoor spaces for residents to hold small gatherings (Credit: MCC Land)
In addition, the developer has project-managed two ECs — Northwave and Forestville — as well as The Nautical condominium in the Yishun-Sembawang area for Hao Yuan Group.
For MCC Land, the experience has given them an edge in the region. “Our strong development track record in the northern region has deepened our understanding of its demography, urban geography and home buyer expectations. This has given us a competitive advantage, especially in marketing a project,” the company’s spokesperson says.

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