Braddell View privatised, marks end of HUDC scheme
After 42 years, the curtain fell on the Housing and Urban Development Company (HUDC) scheme with the privatisation of the last HUDC estate yesterday.
Braddell View, comprising 918 flats and two shops, is the largest of the 18 HUDC estates, and the last to be privatised, a Housing Board statement said.
All 7,731 HUDC units have now been converted into private housing since the Government first moved to privatise such estates in 1995.
This was done to meet the rising aspirations of Singaporeans to own private homes and give greater control over management and maintenance to the owners.
In their day, HUDC units were larger, better built, had fancier designs than their HDB counterparts. Some, at 158 sq m, still remain among the biggest public flats ever.
Today, HUDC's role has been largely superceded by other housing types such as the Design, Build and Sell Scheme and executive condominiums.
Mr Colin Tan, director of research and consultancy at Suntec Real Estate Consultants, said HUDC was good for people who wanted something better than public housing but could not afford private property.
The supply of private housing was limited then, so many picked the HUDC option, said Mr Tan.
But as the years passed, dwindling demand and more housing choices meant the programme ended in 1987.
Braddell View obtained the required 75 per cent majority support from flat owners to proceed with privatisation in 2014. Residents were elated to hear the news of the privatisation, a hard-fought process that spanned 18 years.
The estate will now be managed by its Management Corporation Strata Title (MCST) and its existing management committee assumes the role of its council.
Mr Alex Teo, Braddell View's new MCST chairman, told The Straits Times yesterday: "We are still just digesting the news after we received word at about 5pm. Everyone is so happy and there might be celebrations."
Compared to the other 17 estates, the privatisation process took a longer time for Braddell View due to its unique characteristics - it sits on two parcels of land with different leases that expire two years, two months and 27 days apart. One lease will expire in 2077 and the other in 2080. The next step would be to meet residents to discuss whether to proceed with selling en bloc or not.