The Arcadia (Arcadia Garden) Cecil Lee Cecil Lee email@example.com
This condo, nestled on a tranquil and serene site at Aracdia Road - off Adam Road was unsuccessful in topping up the lease to 99 years. As in Singapore, when a development reaches 60 years or less of lease; it is difficult for potential buyers to seek loans and this leads to plummeting price for the development.
This is an extract:
Source: The Sunday Times April 10, 2011
INSPIRED BY THE HANGING GARDENS OF BABYLON
Arcadia belongs to the old generation of private condominiums in Singapore which began to appear in the late 1970s.
It was designed by local architect Chua Ka Seng, the design consultant who also left his mark on Shangri-la Hotel's garden wing.
Arcadia was completed in 1983.
When contacted, Mr Chua, who is still working at his firm Chua Ka Seng & Partners Chartered Architects, told The Sunday Times the condo took its inspiration from the Hanging Gardens of Babylon and was a modern take on it.
It has big, spacious garden terraces on every level with central courtyards within each building block for cross ventilation.
"We were the first to set the scene for vertical landscaping in buildings. If this condo is demolished or torn down later, it will be a tremendous loss," he said.
Aracdia features three blocks; each has four wings arranged in a cruciform plan.
This unique design gives every apartment at least three exposures to light and ventilation - two facing outwards and one facing the internal courtyard.
The design was ahead of its time and represented the best in class in tropical architecture that minimised the need for artifical cooling such as air-conditioning.
In two of the blocks, the perimeters of the floor plates become progressively smaller as the blocks increase in height.
The floor plates, slightly offset inwards over a large central open landscaped atrium, converge at the seventh storey.
From there, the converged wings form a compression ring before continuing to rise vertically.
Mr Chua said he felt that unless the site is in the way of a major highway or public project, it should be kept, as it was one of the landmark buildings completed in Singapore's formative years. "Nobody can say this building is obsolete. I don't think it will ever be outdated."
Mr Chua is also behind other notable buildings such as 50 Keong Saik Road, which is a conserved shophouse that has been convered into a hotel.