Oliver HECKMANN_thumbnail_RESEARCH_Next Generation High-rise_Singapore Good Design Award

Singapore Good Design / SG Mark Award 2019



Grand Challenge: Sustainable Built Environment

Research Team 

Principal Investigators:
Michael Budig
Oliver Heckmann

Research Assistants:
Ray CHERN Xi Cheng, Markus Matthias HUDERT, Amanda NG Qi Boon, LOO Jun Wen, Clement LORK, Zack XUEREB CONTI

Lynette Cheah, ESD/SUTD 
Colin Yip, Arup Singapore

Richard De Neufville


Singapore Good Design / SG Mark Award 2019, Design Business Chamber Singapore  
‘Generic Dwelling Templates for Future Urban Habitation’

Oliver Heckmann, Michael Budig, Ng Qi Boon Amanda   

Exhibition, National Design Centre Singapore, 23 March – 12 April, Changi Airport Terminal 3, 23 May – 30 June


“A new highly adaptable dwelling model is proposed that is deliberately generic and open-ended. As an alternative to the about 50,000 most often inherently inflexible residential units annually being built in Singapore such adaptability would also allow radically different, user-driven concepts of ‘Built-to-Order’ when new residential construction projects are being launched…” 



“…The exemplary unit ribbons illustrate the versatility to accommodate extremely diversifying models of co-habitation. They enable numerous adaptations and allow division, connection and re-programming of units to respond to increasingly unpredictable changes in people’s life-cycles, with minimal changes of the hard-ware…”

EXEMPLARY ADAPTATIONS (from left to right):  A division of a nuclear family unit into one for a childless couple and a studio unit as rent income, once the children move out.  / A division of a nuclear family unit into one for single parent family and a senior couple as potential care facilitators, in case of a divorce. / A division of a nuclear family unit into one for a low income family and a studio unit as rent income, in case of financial hazards.  / A division of a multi-generational family unit with an originally separate entrance and living space for the seniors into three units, once the children move out and in case the grandparents move to a care facility.  

“…Unexpected shifts can thus be accommodated, enabling residents to stay in their familiar neighbourhoods and to extend building’s service life-time.  Combining different demographic needs, income levels and cultural backgrounds will generate inclusive and diverse residential communities. A fundamentally new form of organization of the allocation of dwelling might thus unlock. ‘Built-to-order’ hence can extend to an entirely user-driven process. It could accommodate emerging demands that are difficult to predict by potentially enabling numerous and adaptable unit agglomeration patterns. ”