Holland Drive/Holland Close HDB flats reap benefits of locale rejuvenation

uni.sutiah@edgeprop.sg

Holland Village is undergoing an extensive facelift, and as a designated URA Identity Node, the neighbourhood has been earmarked for preservation and maintenance. There has been a spate of en bloc projects in the vicinity these few years, including Hollandia and Toho Mansion, and their reincarnations—such as Van Holland—are expected to launch at between $2,800 and $2,900 psf. All these will undoubtedly boost the appeal of HDB flats in the nearby Holland Drive/Holland Close neighbourhood.


Refreshing Holland Village


The HDB blocks in Holland Drive are within walking distance of the MRT station, cafes, convenience stores, supermarkets, and wet markets. Photo credit: Loh Xiu Ruth


The HDB arena may not be a direct beneficiary of the en bloc stir, but the movement’s ripple effect will have an impact on the district’s HDB prices. The URA Draft Master Plan 2019 specifically underlined Holland Village as an area of interest for enhancement and rejuvenation, and extensive billion-dollar expansion plans for the village are underway. Communal spaces, commercial properties, and private units are on the cards for this unprecedented Holland Village refurbishment, which Far East Organization is undertaking.

HDB units in the vicinity of Holland Village—on Holland Drive, Holland Close, and Holland Avenue—are a mix of five-room, four-room, and three-room apartments. Many of these were built in the 1970s and are showing signs of age. Still, these HDB blocks are similar to wine—they develop richer characters as they grow older.

The Holland Drive/Holland Close are also sought after as a housing address because of its proximity to various amenities—including two wet markets at Ghim Moh and Holland Village—and the Circle Line’s Holland Village MRT stop. The Star Vista shopping mall and Buona Vista MRT Station are both within close travelling distance, bumping up the attraction of Holland Drive/Holland Close as a good hub for setting up home.

The area’s popularity is mirrored in its HDB transaction prices, and the neighbourhood is one of Singapore’s few million-dollar HDB hotspots (see table). Multiple HDB units have broken the million-dollar price ceiling in recent years, and the Holland Drive/Holland Close address is likely to command even higher premiums in the coming years, given the area’s upcoming development plans.


Million-dollar units at Holland Drive/Holland Close


Source: EdgeProp and URA. The best of both worlds.


Holland Village is a much-loved neighbourhood and has a strong reputation as one of Singapore’s quirkiest and most bohemian addresses. Despite its artistic flair and carefree air, the village is down-to-earth, with an extremely practical side, as shown by its numerous eateries and markets. Part of the village’s character lies in its low-rise architecture, affording the taller HDB blocks a more spacious view. While Singapore is generally known to be a verdant city, the Holland Village area has more than its fair share of greenery.


Flourishing plant life is one of the village’s best attributes. Photo credit: Loh Xiu Ruth


This locale near town has a unique balance of zen and city hustle not easily found elsewhere; this is undoubtedly one of the reasons this central district is such a charming spot in which to live, play and wander about. HDB residents can easily pop out for supper late at night and go bar-hopping with friends on the weekends—without needing to drive a car, board a bus, or ride a train.


HDB residents in Holland Drive/Holland Close can stroll through quiet streets lined with unusual—even peculiar—stores, such as those along the wide road running up Chip Bee Gardens. Photo credit: Loh Xiu Ruth


These qualities define Holland Drive/Holland Close and make it a popular HDB housing estate. The wild private property psf prices can be out of reach for the average Singaporean, such as this $4 million ($2,000 psf) apartment at Parvis, along Holland Hill. HDB unit prices are indisputably more affordable, and the upside is these apartments come with the same neighbourhood perks and plusses as their private cousins. However, three-room flat asking prices in the area are nudging half a million dollars, making government housing here a notch pricier than their counterparts in other parts of Singapore. An example would be an equivalent 3I-configuration HDB flat in Hougang, with an asking price of $300,000.

One thing remains certain: as Holland Village continues to shine under the national spotlight and experience its makeover, the Holland Drive/Holland Close neighbourhood is likely to become even more appealing to house-hunters looking for a first address, a forever home, or a family-friendly one.

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