For those who are used to living in mature estates, the phrase “new town” or “non-mature estate” might conjure up images of densely-packed housing and sterile-looking streets without the coffee shops and sundry stores that give older neighbourhoods their character.
However, not all non-mature estates are the same. As one of Singapore’s more established new towns, Sengkang offers the convenience of a new town combined with the lifestyle of a mature estate.
Does that sound perfect? With the arrival of the upcoming Rivercove Residences EC, living in this unique town can become a reality. Here is a look at what’s in store.
Once home to farmland and forests, Sengkang was first developed as a modern housing estate two decades ago, complete with its own MRT station, LRT line and bus interchange.
Sengkang’s integrated transport amenities make it quick, easy and environmentally-friendly to get around Singapore. Since they are already built, residents can enjoy Sengkang’s seamless connectivity right away, without the inconvenience of construction works.
For those who drive, Sengkang is also conveniently served by the Tampines Expressway.
Strange but true: Sengkang has a noticeably different feel from the neighbouring Punggol, despite the two new towns sharing a similar population of residents (mainly couples and young families).
This may be due to its proximity to the more mature estate Hougang to its south, with the nearby Jalan Kayu’s shophouses adding a dose of historic charm to the mix.
Having been around for about two decades, Sengkang has had the chance to develop its own character and community.
For instance, it has famous food stalls (and corresponding queues) like the Armenian Street Char Kway Teow stall, which moved from its old city centre location to Sengkang, and of course the well-loved restaurants along the Jalan Kayu strip.
And just like a mature estate, Sengkang has a wet market of its own at Kopitiam Square, with one more on the way, in addition to supermarkets. Residents who enjoy cooking will appreciate the option to buy fresher produce.
Think all new towns are arid and industrial-looking? Not Sengkang.
It is blessed with the meandering Sungei Punggol, which plays a prominent role in the environment of the estate. Some lucky residents of the upcoming Rivercove Residences EC can even enjoy views of the water from their homes.
The tranquil Sengkang Riverside Park (just steps away from the EC) is one of Sengkang’s key attractions. Spread across the river’s banks, it features hiking and running trails through fruit trees, marshland and the Sengkang Floating Wetland – all of which attract different types of wildlife.
Branching out from the park are connectors on which you can run, cycle or glide to other parts of the town. Or venture out to Punggol for its cafes, the scenic Punggol Promenade and Coney Island.
If these outdoor recreation options are not enough, the nearby Sengkang Sports and Recreation Centre is worth a visit.
The complex houses swimming pools and a water park (a hit with the kids), soccer field, hockey pitch, sports hall, dance studio and more. You will be hard-pressed to find comparable recreational facilities in ageing mature towns.
With couples and young families making up the bulk of Sengkang’s population, it is no surprise that the town is full of amenities for them.
For newlyweds settling into their first home at Rivercove Residences, convenience is key to this honeymoon phase of married bliss.
With plenty of shopping malls, supermarkets, eateries and entertainment options (indoor and outdoor) around Sengkang, couples can ease into their new phase of life without worrying about the day-to-day.
Those just starting a family would be glad to know that there is a plethora of schools for every age, from preschools to secondary schools. Unlike other new towns, Sengkang is established enough that it has renowned schools like Nan Chiau Primary School and Mee Toh School.
Best of all, there is a supportive community of young parents in Sengkang – so expect plenty of playdates on Junior’s social calendar.
An added bonus is the proximity of nearby workplaces such as Tampines or Seletar Aerospace Park, which cuts short commute times, leaving more time to spend with the ones who matter.
From wet markets to parks to quality schools to shopping malls, Sengkang is not your average new town. On the contrary, the 20-year-old estate is a wonderful mix of modern conveniences with rich amenities – a new town that is like an old town.