Plans to avoid 'fryscrapers' in S'pore: Khaw

Plans to avoid 'fryscrapers' in S'pore: Khaw
London’s Walkie Talkie tower can reflect so much sunlight that the reflective rays can fry an egg nearby.

Imagine having to wear sunglasses at home to protect yourself from the unwelcome glare of sunlight reflected from the metal roofs of other buildings.

That was what one resident here had to go through, Minister for National Development Khaw Boon Wan, wrote in the latest entry in his blog on Housing Matters on Thursday.

He mentioned instances in London, where a "fryscraper" building made news around the world because it reflected so much sunlight that its rays could even fry an egg nearby, and in Hong Kong, where the glare from its tallest building, International Commerce Centre, inconvenienced residents and was debated in Parliament.

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In Singapore, residents are also beginning to give feedback on this problem, Mr Khaw said.

"With more buildings being clothed in glass and metal, and covered with metal roofs, this is an issue of concern. How do other cities respond to this?"

Sydney, for example, has a regulation that light reflectivity from building materials used on external facades must not exceed 20 per cent.

Mr Khaw said the Building and Construction Authority will soon be updating its building regulations to include reflectivity requirements for all kinds of facade materials, and not just glass, as is the case under the current requirements.

This will ensure that new designs do not cause any inconvenience or hardship to anyone.

Mr Khaw wrote: "Building designs are increasingly more complex and elaborate.

"With an increasing number of developers and architects exploring the use of less conventional materials, some form of check and balance is necessary so that design does not come at the cost of comfort and safety."


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