SINGAPORE – The roads near Mattar MRT station along the Downtown Line in MacPherson will be realigned and widened in preparation for residential developments in the area.
The Land Transport Authority (LTA) called a tender on Aug 24 to realign Merpati Road.
Right now, it is a one-way, two-lane road connecting Aljunied Road to Mattar Road and Circuit Road.
When completed by December 2026, Merpati Road will become a dual two-lane road, which means there will be two lanes going in each direction.
In tandem with the road changes, bus stops and a taxi stand at Entrance A of Mattar MRT station will be moved and replaced.
The LTA said the realignment is needed in preparation for future developments in the area.
Based on tender documents seen by The Straits Times, Jalan Anggerek, which is connected to a stretch of Merpati Road close to Aljunied Road, will also be realigned. This, though, is not part of the latest tender.
At present, a portion of Jalan Anggerek runs along a plot of vacant land after some landed properties were acquired as part of redevelopment plans.
Three blocks of Housing Board flats along Merpati Road are also being demolished, with work expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2024.
The area is zoned for residential use under the Urban Redevelopment Authority’s (URA) masterplan. When contacted by ST, URA and HDB did not give details about plans for the area.
According to URA’s masterplan, there are three land parcels around Mattar MRT station and the affected roads.
Property analysts said that if the area were to be used for new Build-To-Order (BTO) flats, these would likely be classified as Plus flats under the new housing classification that kicks in from the second half of 2024.
Compared with Standard flats, Plus flats are in more attractive locations within a given region, such as near an MRT station or a town centre. Plus units come with stricter resale conditions and a longer minimum occupation period of 10 years, instead of five years for Standard flats.
Mr Nicholas Mak, chief research officer of property portal Mogul.sg, believes there is a likelihood new BTO units would be launched in the area as Plus flats. There is also the possibility that these units could be classified as Prime flats, as they would be near an MRT station in the central region, he said.
Prime flats are those in the most central locations.
But Ms Christine Sun, senior vice-president for research and analytics at real estate firm OrangeTee & Tie, said it is more likely any new flats in the area would be in the Plus category, as they are on the city fringes.
Flats under the current Prime Location Public Housing model – which will be known as Prime flats in future – are in areas such as Bukit Merah and Queenstown, or near the Downtown Core.
The URA masterplan allows buildings on the three parcels of land to be more than 36 storeys high.
Ms Sun pointed out that high-rise units in some of the new residential blocks there could offer panoramic views, as they overlook a landed housing estate.
As there are few private non-landed residential developments in the neighbourhood, Mr Mak said there is also a chance that the land would be sold to developers to build private properties.
Whether the new developments are public or private, property analysts said having more amenities in the area would be a boost for the housing estate.
Mr Mak felt the area where the three old HDB blocks stand, which is near the entrance to the MRT station, could be rezoned to allow shops and clinics to operate on the ground floor of the new residential units for the convenience of residents.
Based on the targeted completion date for the realignment of Merpati Road, Mr Mak expects new housing units to be completed only after 2030.
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