Located next to WOHA's 960-unit Skyville in Singapore's Dawson development, the Sky Terrace comprises five residential towers connected with a common podium and several elevated gardens acting as green bridges. SCDA Architects designed the complex with energy-efficient living and social interaction in mind, earning Singapore's prestigious 5-star award for residential high-rise architecture. The recently completed project is based on a "housing-in-a-park" concept, with lush cascading roof gardens, inclusive spaces, rainwater harvesting systems, drip irrigation and solar panels contributing to its environmental and design excellence.
The project was prompted by a huge population increase and a strong need for public housing. Part of a build-to-order development located near the city center, Sky Terrace houses naturally ventilated apartments distributed across five 40- to 43-story high residential blocks connected with a four-story carpark podium. Vegetated bridges connect the blocks and, together with roof gardens and sky villages, create a wide array of communal spaces. Children’s playgrounds, elderly and adult fitness stations and an outdoor amphitheater encourage inter-generational socialization. Multi-generational loft units are combined with studio apartments, mixing users of different ages and social standing and allowing young families to stay close to their parents.
One occupant is Mr Lester Goh, who lives in one of the three-bedroom apartments. His experience as a resident confirms the efficiency of passive design strategies deployed by the designers when it comes to ventilation and daylighting. “On the warmest days in tropical Singapore, I have experienced micro air movements within the apartment,” said Goh. “Clothes drying yards and racks are provided as a natural means of drying your clothes, sheets and towels using natural wind, thus saving on electric dryers. Bathroom windows are large, unlike most public housing, and this reduces mold buildup and brings light and air into the bathrooms,” he added.
Goh customized the interior of the apartment by removing some of the partitions and using natural materials which complement the general design of the building. Through several interventions and carefully designed details, the owner managed to create a toddler-friendly living space that doubles as a casual music studio where he can practice his guitar.
In addition to passive design principles, the project boosts active sustainable technologies such as photovoltaics, rainwater harvesting and drop irrigation. The project in its entirety reflects SCDA’s approach to incorporating nature and sustainability into building design, as well as the city’s commitment to encouraging projects that bring residential architecture to next level.