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  • Writer's pictureChang Wei Quan

Case Study: Redevelopment Cost for Holland Rise GCB Site

Updated: Jan 19, 2021

Case Study: Redevelopment Cost for Holland Rise GCB Site

Update: I'll like to thank my readers on giving us more suggestions towards improving the article! One point that was brought up if it was possible to create alternative forms of housing such as semi-detached and terraces. This is not allowed as Holland Rise is a GCBA and more intensive forms are not allowed to maintain the overall character of the area.

Thanks for the constructive comments and I'll see how to implement the topic of subdivision in my future case studies!

I’m back with another case study on how much redeveloping landed properties will cost! In this case study, we will be analyzing a land plot at the Holland Rise GCB site that is going for sale at $68 million.

The size of the land plot located within the Holland Rise Good Class Bungalow (GCB) area is ludicrous, as it is approximately around 52,992 sqft! However, this makes for an entertaining case study for our readers!

With only approximately 2,700 GCBs located in 39 gazetted GCB areas, this prime piece of real estate is owned by some of the wealthiest people in Singapore.

Owning a piece of GCB land comes along with plenty of hidden costs other than its selling price. For example, various stamp duties apply and paying 12% of its cost is a hefty sum. Other than administrative expenses, you will need to hire various tradesman for the regular upkeep of your property.

This case study does not in any way or form a binding contract, and it's only for educational purposes. I advise you to speak to our qualified builders if you are interested in a quotation.

Land Area

This land plot is 52,992 sq ft or 4,922 sqm. For this land plot to be considered as GCB status, here are the following land parameters to be met.

  • Minimum plot size: 1400 m2

  • Minimum width: 18.5 m

  • Minimum depth: 30 m

  • Site Coverage: 40%

This land plot easily meets all these criteria. Some other criteria will have to be met in terms of envelope control guidelines for GCBs, which will be elaborated on further along within this case study.

The aforementioned plot is a combination of three separate land parcels, but I believe that the interested investor/homeowner will be purchasing all three. This is because purchasing them separately might have severe repercussions as some of these plots are landlocked. This means that there might be easements on your land if the three parcels are owned by different owners.

Development Control Guidelines

Landed Housing Area

This land plot is rather interesting as it is flanked by East Sussex Lane and Holland Rise. The main entrance depends on which plot is being purchased. For this situation, we are anticipating our potential buyer to purchase all three plots.

As such, the main entrance can be either along East Sussex Lane or Holland Rise. In my opinion, landed property owners will usually opt for a wider entrance for numerous reasons (i.e., Fengshui, impressive frontage, more parking space). However, owners of GCB plots generally prefer more privacy.

Having the entrance along Holland Rise provides a longer driveway and technically less waste of space. However, some interesting constructions can be explored, such as a 20 m lap pool?

Road Buffer and Side/Rear Setbacks

Holland Rise GCB Plot Road Reserve Part 1
Holland Rise GCB Plot Road Reserve Part 2

Interestingly there are three major roads that we have to observe these setbacks. Holland Rise (Cat 5), East Sussex Lane (Cat 5) and North Buona Vista Road (Cat 3). A higher category will usually refer to a longer setback required.

For 6 storeys or more, the setback will be 10 metres. However as this is a GCB plot, there can be no more than 2 storeys + attic. For the buildup of fewer than 6 storeys, the setback will be 7.5 m.

For both side and rear building setback, GCB plots are usually at least 3 metres. However, this is a unique case as the boundary of these plots are being fronted by roads. This means the rear building setback will be 7.5 m, while the side building setback will be 3 m.

Site Coverage

e-Lithograph for Holland Rise GCB

As Holland Rise is a GCB site, a maximum site coverage of 40% has to be enforced. Taking into account all the above guidelines and site coverage, the approximate area for site coverage will be around 21,211 sqft or 1979 m2. This is the area which is demarcated in green.

Build-Up Area

Based on URA’s guideline on envelope control, GCBs are to be limited to not more than two-storey with attic. This is to preserve the overall character and landscape of these GCB areas.

It doesn’t matter, however, as the allowed build-up area is extremely large!

Based on the above findings, the approximate built-up area allowed for the Holland Rise Land Plot is around 42,422 sqft or 3,940 m2!

Expected Cost

The ballpark range for the complete redevelopment of the Holland Rise GCB plot will cost in total $12.01-15.76 mil! The cost of your project ultimately depends on many factors such as the complexity of build, and quality of finishes and fittings to house interior.


There are some other details that we have not covered in more detail but necessary such as professional fees, authorities’ plan processing charges, construction financing charges, site inspectorate and other administrative expenses.

In regards to the building itself, costs for construction of a basement level, soil conditions, demolition of an existing structure and interior fittings are excluded as these are sometimes not required and/or handled by other contractors.

Finally, the project cost can vary based on the duration of the project.


Redevelopment of a plot of this size is very costly and it will take a team of skilled architects, builders and interior designers to build the home of your dreams. The build-up area and cost that we have provided for you here should be a good gauge on how much it should cost, but it is still best to contact us should you have further queries.

The total built-up area of this landed property will be approximately 42,422 sqft.

The expected cost of the project will be between $12.01-15.76 million.

If you require more information in regards to the total rebuild check out this Guide to Rebuilding Landed Properties for Private Home Owners.

For some of the previous builds that we have done, click here.

Octane Concept Design shall not be liable for any special, incidental, or consequential damages, including, without limitation, lost revenues or lost profits, resulting from the use or misuse of the information contained within this case study.

The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed in the text belong solely to the author, and not necessarily to the author’s employer, organization, committee or other group or individual. The author does not accept any responsibility whatsoever for any harm or loss arising from accessing or relying on information contained in this blog post.

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