Real News‎ > ‎2013‎ > ‎February 2013‎ > ‎

13 February 2013

13th February, Wednesday




Developers rapped for misusing industrial space

Source: The Straits Times

Some industrial property developers have been taken to task by the authorities for misusing space in industrial buildings that they developed.

At least two developers have been asked to cease the unauthorised use of industrial space as office space, The Straits Times understands.

Those rapped by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) include Midview Development and Sin Soon Lee Realty. Both set up their office in a strata industrial building they developed.

Industry sources said this practice was not uncommon among small firms, including industrial developers. However, it goes against a URA "60-40" rule which effectively forbids the use of industrial units as pure offices.

The rule stipulates that each strata unit in an industrial development must devote at least 60 per cent of the total floor area to core industrial activities such as manufacturing, assembly and repair workshops or warehouse and storage facilities. The other 40 per cent may be used for supporting purposes such as ancillary offices, staff canteens and showrooms.

This is meant to ensure that industrial land is used predominantly for industrial activities.

Midview Development has already moved its office out of its 60-year leasehold light industrial development Midview Building, which is located in Bukit Batok.

It is unclear whether Sin Soon Lee Realty has fully vacated its office in the freehold light industrial building, Shun Li Industrial Complex, in Sims Drive.

Analysts said that in many industrial buildings, particularly those zoned "Business 1" (B1) which indicates light industrial use, it was quite likely that at least 30 per cent of tenants did not meet the "60-40" rule.

Several other industrial tenants have recently been caught flouting the industrial usage rule.

These projects include The Alexcier in Alexandra Road, First Centre in Serangoon North, Midview City in Sin Ming Lane, 34 Boon Leat Terrace and One Pemimpin in Pemimpin Drive.

URA added that users of the units had been given a "reasonable but definitive timeframe to cease the unauthorised uses".

"Apart from the more recent cases that are still under investigation or appeal, the rest of the unauthorised uses have since ceased," she said. Users can be charged with failing to comply with the "60-40" rule, and may face a fine of up to $200,000 or up to 12 months' jail, or both.


Link to the story: