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Terrace House

A terrace house is a house on a lot which forms part of a row of at least 3 dwelling houses abutting the common boundaries with party walls. The width of the terrace plot may vary but it should not be less than 6m wide for the intermediate units and 8m for the corner units.

In Singapore, terrace houses are restricted property and there are restrictions on foreign ownership. All foreigner will need special approval for purchase of landed property except for Sentosa Cove.

There are 2 types of terrace in Singapore; namely, terrace house I & terrace house II.
For terrace house I, front setback from the road is based on buffer requirement (see Figure 1).

terrace house I
Figure 1

For the terrace II, the building wall and roof eaves are setback 2m (fixed) and 1m from the road reserve respectively. A standard plot size and typical layout are shown in Figure 2.

terrace house II
Figure 2

To safeguarded and protect the character of private housing estates in Singapore, the government has introduced The Designated Landed Housing Area Plan. From this set of Landed Housing Area Plan, you are able to find out the locations of these safeguarded estates, and the type of housing that can be built in your estate. These estates are categorised by the predominant housing form as follows:

  • Good Class Bungalow area where bungalow development must have a minimum plot size of 1,400 sqm. Strata bungalows are also permitted.

  • Bungalow area where bungalow development must have a minimum plot size of 400 sqm. Strata bungalows are also permitted.

  • Semi-detached area where bungalows, strata bungalows, semi-detached and strata semi-d houses are permitted.

  • Mixed Landed housing area where any form of landed housing such as bungalows, semi-d houses and terrace type I (occupying a land area of 150 sqm) are permitted. In addition, townhouses, strata bungalows and cluster housing with their own control guidelines are also permitted. Terrace type II (occupying a land area of 110 sqm) is, however subject to evaluation as these houses with 1.0m front setback could affect the streetscape.

Building Height

Developments in these estates, including Good Class Bungalow Areas (GCBA) are generally allowed up to 2 storeys. In estates where there is no 2-storey restriction, new buildings of up to 3 storeys are permitted.


Terrace house II (TTII) must be sited within its own enclave or satisfy the following criteria:

(a) Within existing estates:
If the development site is located within an existing landed housing estate, the TTII development, when completed, should form an enclave on its own (see Figure 3).

(b) For new estates: TTII guidelines can apply to new landed housing areas, example, sale of site for landed developments, provided it is developed comprehensively as a distinct TTII estate. Alternatively, it can be allowed in isolated private residential estate where such compact development forms an enclave on its own and has no adverse impact to the surrounding residential estates. Figure 3 show examples of Enclaves of Existing Landed Housing Plots Where TTII guidelines May Apply.

terrace house enclave
Figure 3

Site Coverage

There is no site coverage control for semi-d and terrace. Site coverage control is only applicable to detached house or bungalow development. The intention is to safeguard the ambience and character of bungalow development. It also helps to ensure that there are sufficient open areas around the compound of each bungalow which, together with other similar units, contribute to the total environmental quality of a bungalow area.

Plot Dimension

The minimum plot dimensions and plot sizes for terrace house development are as follows:

Terrace house I (intermediate units) 6m nil 150m
Terrace house II (corner units) 8m nil 80m
Terrace house II (intermediate units) 6m nil 80m

Access Point for New Landed Houses

All vehicular access for new landed housing developments, especially terrace and semi-d houses, should be paired-up, where possible i.e. two access points located side-by-side with each other. This is to secure a sufficiently wide strip of land (at least 6m) between 2 pairs of access points to facilitate roadside planting and provide some space for kerbside parking within landed housing estate. The 6m length is the current minimum requirement of NParks to enable small trees to be planted along these estate roads.

However, for new landed housing plot with plot width of more than 10m, its access point need not be paired up with the adjacent unit provided it can provide the full continuous 6m planting verge within the plot width of the site

For existing landed housing developments, the existing access arrangement can remain. However, for accesses that are already in a paired arrangement today, it should not be separated in future.

Redevelopment Of Existing Terrace House

With the relaxation of plot sizes for bungalows and semi-d houses in 1991. The planning authority has received planning applications for redevelopment of existing semi-d and terrace houses into more units or other housing forms. To optimise land use, these redevelopments are generally allowed if they can satisfy the planning guidelines. House owners making the change are advised to inform their immediate neighbours of their approved plans as early as possible and to seek their cooperation and understanding to minimise inconvenience to both parties.

The conditions for redevelopment are as follows:

From Terrace to Bungalow or Semi-detached House

A corner terrace house plot can be redeveloped into a detached or a new pair of semidetached houses if it can comply with the minimum plot width and size, and provided the adjoining terrace plot has 8m plot width and 200m plot size.

For intermediate terrace houses built in the past with wide frontage and large plot size, any unit in a row of these houses can be redeveloped to other landed housing forms if the plot size and width are sufficient to allow the change, and provided the adjacent affected unit (from which it is detached ) has a minimum plot size of 200m and width of 8m (i.e. capable of being rebuilt into a corner unit in future). For example, the 2nd unit in a row can detach itself from the 3rd unit and pair up with the last unit to form a pair of semi-detached houses or it can detach from the corner house and itself becomes a corner terrace house.

From Semi-detached to Terrace

In areas not designated for bungalows or semi-d, joint redevelopment of a pair of semi-d houses into terrace houses is allowed if it can comply with the minimum plot width and size for terrace houses. The redevelopment of a semi-d house into terrace houses abutting an existing semi-d house is not allowed so as not to downgrade the remaining semi-detached unit to a corner terrace house and limit its redevelopment potential.

Article Source : Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA)

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