Every six months, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) announces a list of land sites for sale, known as the Government Land Sales (GLS) programme. When this happens, developers’ eyes widen, their breathing intensifies and they will stop whatever they’re doing to pay attention.
But it’s not just developers who should listen up. If you’re a potential private home buyer, you should also pay good attention whenever URA announces GLS sites. That’s because, like the URA Masterplan, the GLS programme provides great insight into upcoming real estate developments, which are likely to come in handy.
Here’s an overview of the latest GLS sites for the second half of 2023, as well as a beginner-friendly guide to the GLS programme and why it is meaningful for homebuyers in Singapore.
Government Land Sales (GLS) Programme: What Is It and How Does It Work?
As you probably already know, Singapore is a small country with limited land. Of the land we have, over three-quarters is owned by the Government (State Land).
In order to better utilise the land for urban planning, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) plans and designs land usage for purposes including residential land-dwelling, township designs and zoning of land. Put simply, the URA plans where new buildings go, be it for new condos, sports complexes, shopping malls and even hotels.
For us, the most relevant are the GLS sites allocated for residential developments. Before private property developers (e.g. CapitaLand, Keppel Land, Oxley Holdings, etc.) can develop houses, they will first need to buy land from the Government.
That’s where the GLS programme comes in, where the Government sells usable land to private developers through a tendering process. Long story short, developers will purchase land from the Government in a land-bidding war.
GLS Sites Are Released Twice a Year
Prior to the start of each half of the year, the Government will release State Land for tender through the URA sites. Upcoming URA GLS sites can be viewed on the URA website.
As mentioned, interested developers who wish to acquire the State Land for residential development (e.g. to build new condominiums) will then bid for the land through an open tender. The land will (usually) be awarded to the developer that puts in the highest bid in the open tender.
Upon closing of the tender, URA will release a media statement on the GLS sites and the developers who were awarded the site. Then, a separate media statement will be released to show the public the list of developers that have tendered for the site and the price quoted in their tender.
Here’s what the media statement looks like, which includes the top bidders :
GLS For 2H2023
Now that we’ve explained the GLS in a nutshell, let’s take a look at the latest release of GLS sites.
On 21 June 2023, URA announced 17 sites, eight on the Confirmed List and nine on the Reserve List for the GLS Programme for H2 2023. Together, the sites can yield an estimated “8,590 private residential units, 98,250 sqm gross floor area (GFA) of commercial space and 530 hotel rooms”. Here’s an overview of the Confirmed List of sites for 2H2023:
Site area (ha) / estimated number of units
Gross plot ratio
Estimated launch date
Clementi Avenue 1
1.34 (500 residential units)
Pine Grove (Parcel B)
2.50 (565 residential units)
Lorong 1 Toa Payoh
1.57 (775 residential units)
0.68 (270 residential units, 500m2 of commercial space)
Plantation Close (EC)
2.01 (560 residential units)
Upper Thomson Road (Parcel A)
2.44 (595 residential units, 2,000m2 of commercial space)
Upper Thomson Road (Parcel B)
3.20 (940 residential units)
Zion Road (Parcel A)
1.51 (955 residential units, 2,400m2 of commercial space)
From the 1H2023 GLS programme, four sites from the Confirmed List have been launched for tender; they are Marina Gardens Lane, Jalan Tembusu, Lentor Central, and Champions Way. The remaining three sites, Media Circle, Marina Gardens Crescent, and Jurong Lake District, will be launched in late-June 2023. The remaining nine sites on the Reserve List will be carried over to the 2H2023 GLS Programme.
As compared to the 1H2023 GLS programme’s Confirmed List, the supply of private housing in the 2H2023 GLS programme’s Confirmed List has increased. Dr Lee Nai Jia, Head of Real Estate Intelligence, Data and Software Solutions, PropertyGuru Group comments, “In light of the robust demand for private housing, the government has escalated the supply of such housing via the GLS programme by 26% compared to the first half of 2023. This will result in an estimated total Confirmed List supply of around 9,250 units for the entirety of 2023 – the highest in the last ten years.
This increased supply is to be expected, considering the total number of unsold units is relatively low due to interruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Confirmed and Reserved Lists include locations in both premium and suburban districts, with numerous sites conveniently located a short distance from MRT stations.”
Including Executive Condominiums (ECs), the total pipeline supply of private housing is now about 63,500. Dr Tan Tee Khoon, Country Manager – Singapore, PropertyGuru adds, “Given that half of the GLS Confirmed List supply is in the Outside Central Region (OCR), this should cater to the upgrader demand for the HDB flat lessees which will reach Minimum Occupation Period (MOP) in the next 24 to 36 months.
This should quell any anxiety that private residential stocks are being depleted and the lack of timely adequate replenishment. While it may not necessarily address the immediacy of accommodation for those requiring urgent housing, this injection of supply is likely to rein in future property prices and even moderate rents.”
1. Clementi Avenue 1
The Clementi Avenue 1 site is zoned for residential and can yield up to 500 units. It borders the Ayer Rajah Expressway and the closest MRT stations are the Clementi and Dover MRT stations on the East-West Line (EWL).
Future residents who have children of school-going age will appreciate that the Clementi Avenue 1 site is close to Nan Hua High School, NUS High School of Mathematics and Science, as well as the National University of Singapore. Other nearby amenities include Clementi ActiveSG Sports Centre and Swimming Complex.
The Clementi Avenue 1 site is estimated to be open for tender in August 2023.
Browse properties for sale in Clementi on PropertyGuru.
2. Pine Grove (Parcel B)
Situated in the Pandan Valley residential enclave and next to the Pine Grove (Parcel A) site, the Pine Grove (Parcel B) site can yield around 565 units with a site area of 2.50ha. Dover MRT station is the closest existing MRT station, giving residents access to the EWL.
Residents can access the nearby Ulu Pandan Canal for sporting activities like running or cycling.
The Pine Grove (Parcel B) site is estimated to be open for tender in August 2023.
Browse properties for sale in the Pandan Valley area on PropertyGuru.
3. Lorong 1 Toa Payoh
The site at Lorong 1 Toa Payoh can yield about 775 units and has a site area of 1.57ha. Beatty Secondary School and Kheng Cheng School are nearby.
Located a five-minute walk from Braddell MRT station on the North South Line (NSL), future residents have easy access to public transport nodes. They will be one stop away from the Circle Line (via Bishan MRT station), three stops from the Downtown Line (via Newton MRT station) and four stops from the Orchard Road shopping belt (via Orchard MRT station).
On the Lorong 1 Toa Payoh site, Dr Lee Nai Jia expects the site to “attract the most interest” due to its proximity to Braddell MRT station.
“The demand is likely to be predominantly driven by HDB upgraders, particularly those residing in mature HDB housing estates.”
The Lorong 1 Toa Payoh is estimated to be open for tender in September 2023.
4. Orchard Boulevard
The Orchard Boulevard site can yield about 270 residential units and an estimated 500m2 of commercial space with a site area of 0.68ha. The site sits atop Orchard Boulevard MRT station on the Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL) and is in the heart of a prime district.
Regarding this site, Dr Lee Nai Jia mentioned that the Orchard Boulevard site “may pose the greatest risk to developers, given the recent implementation of Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) tax hikes”.
“Developers interested in this site will need to strategise their product to be attractive to Singapore Citizens or families, whether it’s for owner-occupation or rental yield purposes.”
From Orchard Boulevard MRT station, residents are one stop from the NSL (via Orchard MRT station), two stops from the Downtown Line (via Stevens MRT station), and three stops from the Circle Line (via Caldecott MRT station).
The Orchard Boulevard site is estimated to be open for tender in October 2023.
5. Plantation Close (EC Site)
The site at Plantation Close can yield about 560 residential units with a site area of 2.01ha. Located in the new Tengah estate, the EC site is just three bus stops away from the Chinese Garden MRT station on the EWL.
Dr Lee Nai Jia highlights that “keen interest in the EC sites, particularly the Plantation Close EC site” is anticipated.
“In the Reserved List, the EC sites at Tampines Street 95 and Senja Close could potentially be activated. Despite the cooling measures and the prevailing economic uncertainty, the ECs continue to appeal to first-time homeowners and those looking to upgrade their property. Hence, their demand remains steadfast.
The abundance of EC sites in the Reserved List could potentially moderate land bids for upcoming EC sites.”
The Plantation Close site is estimated to be open for tender in November 2023.
Browse properties for sale near Tengah on PropertyGuru.
6. Upper Thomson Road (Parcel A)
The Upper Thomson Road (Parcel A) site can yield around 595 residential units and 2,000m2 of commercial space with a site area of 2.44ha.
It is right next to Springleaf MRT station on the TEL. Residents can easily access MacRitchie Nature Trail & Reservoir Park as well as the nature near Upper Seletar Reservoir. The Springleaf area will see a slew of upcoming green developments, including more public transport links and the expansion of park areas and the Park Connector Network.
The Upper Thomson Road (Parcel A) is estimated to be open for tender in December 2023.
Browse properties for sale in Springleaf on PropertyGuru.
7. Upper Thomson Road (Parcel B)
Located next to the Upper Thomson Road (Parcel A) site, the Upper Thomson Road (Parcel B) site can yield about 940 residential units over a site area of 3.20ha.
The Upper Thomson Road (Parcel B) is estimated to be open for tender in December 2023.
8. Zion Road (Parcel A)
Finally, the Zion Road (Parcel A) site. The site is close to the various trendy cafe and restaurant options in the Boat Quay area and can yield up to 955 residential units and 2,400m2 of commercial space.
Located a three-minute walk from Havelock MRT station on the TEL, residents are well-connected to the public transport system. From Havelock MRT station, residents are two stops away from the NSL (via Orchard MRT station), one stop from the North-East Line (NEL) and EWL (via Outram Park MRT station).
The Zion Road (Parcel A) site is estimated to be open for tender in December 2023.
Browse properties for sale in the River Valley area on PropertyGuru.
GLS Programme Reserve List vs Confirmed List: What Is the Difference?
If, at this point, you’re confused about the Confirmed and Reserve GLS sites, let us explain. There are two types of lists on URA’s website: ‘Confirmed List’ and ‘Reserve List’.
They’re pretty much as their names suggest. Confirmed Lists are confirmed in that they will definitely go on sale on a pre-determined date listed on the URA website.
This is not the same for the Reserve List sites, which aren’t released for tender immediately. Instead, they are released only when there is a successful developer application or sufficient market demand for it.
Developers who are interested in the sites on the Reserve List have to put in an application for them. When any of the interested developers have indicated a minimum price that is accepted by the Government, the site will then be put up for tender.
Here’s an overview of the Reserve List sites for 2H2023:
Site area (ha) / estimated number of units
Proposed gross plot ratio
Status / estimated launch date
2.06 (500 residential units)
Senja Close (EC)
1.01 (295 residential units)
1.23 (680 residential units)
De Souza Avenue
1.91 (350 residential units)
Tampines Street 95 (EC)
2.25 (560 residential units)
Zion Road (Parcel B)
0.92 (605 residential units)
1.00 (13,350m2 of commercial space)
Woodlands Avenue 2
2.75 (440 residential units and 78,000m2 of commercial space)
River Valley Road
1.02 (530 hotel rooms and 2,000m2 of commercial space)
How Is the GLS Programme Relevant to Home Buyers?
You might be thinking, “That’s interesting and all, but how is this relevant to me as a home buyer?”
Well, for starters, the GLS sites indicate the upcoming development areas for residential properties. By keeping up with the data from GLS sites (upcoming, current and past), you’ll know where the next new launch condo or ECs projects will be. This is great for those looking to upgrade their property or invest in one.
And before you buy a property, you also want to know if the surrounding land plots are GLS sites that have been sold, are being sold, or will be sold in the future. You don’t want to buy a property for the view only to have said view blocked by another building in a few years.
As they say, knowledge is power. In this case, when it comes to home buying, each decision you make is literally worth a million bucks. The last thing you want is to make a hasty property purchase, only to find that a more suitable residential project is up for grabs afterwards.
Pro tip: Using the URA Space tool, you can also check out all the GLS sites (upcoming, current and past) on a map.
In conclusion, those who are shopping for a first (or next) home should definitely check out URA’s GLS sites. You can find the recently launched GLS sites here and the past sites here. Alternatively, you can also check out the URA Space to view GLS sites that have been released and sold in the past.
For more property news, content and resources, check out PropertyGuru’s guides section.
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