SOUTHEAST ASIA CONSTRUCTION21 Jan 2019
Surbana Jurong builds global headquarters in Singapore

Surbana Jurong (SJ), one of the largest Asia-based urban and infrastructure consulting firms, recently held the groundbreaking ceremony for its new campus in Singapore, which will also house its global headquarters. Located at Jurong Innovation District (JID), it can accommodate up to 4,000 employees and is expected to be completed by 2021.

Named Surbana Jurong Campus, the new 68,915 sq m development will support SJ’s rapid growth by facilitating stronger teamwork and knowledge sharing among its local and global talents. It will also serve as the nerve centre for research and development of innovation for the built environment, as SJ transitions to applied research to create and bring practical and viable solutions to the industry and community.

Designed by Safdie Surbana Jurong, a collaboration between Safdie Architects and Surbana Jurong established in 2017, the Campus features a sustainable, people-centric and future-ready workplace. Created by renowned architect Moshe Safdie, the design of the new headquarters embodies the character of Singapore as the Garden City by integrating the structure harmoniously with the natural landscape.

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Moshe Safdie (front, right) viewing the 3D model of Surbana Jurong Campus during the groundbreaking ceremony.

According to SJ, the Campus is situated on a previously undeveloped greenfield site and it will push the boundaries of sustainable design in both construction and operation. Its multi-disciplinary team of experts will undertake the entire development from start to end. This encompasses consultancy solutions from project funding, architecture and landscaping, engineering, workplace strategy, cost and project management, through to integrated facilities management and security services.

SJ added that Early Contractor Involvement approach has been adopted, where contractors are engaged early during the design stage to facilitate the integration of design and construction process. Main contractor appointed on the project is Boustead Singapore.

Digitalisation and sustainability

Construction of Surbana Jurong Campus will embrace the use of digital technologies to scale up productivity and efficiency, and is well aligned with Singapore’s push to transform the built environment sector, explained SJ. The project intends to demonstrate the firm’s leadership in leveraging Building Information Modelling (BIM) and extending it to a comprehensive Integrated Digital Delivery (IDD).

In addition, SJ will apply its proprietary solutions such as BIM:FM technology to the facilities management process, in order to increase productivity and achieve cost savings for long-term building maintenance and operational cycle. The construction will also utilise the Design for Manufacturing and Assembly (DfMA) method with the use of precast materials, a signature competency of SJ utilised in its affordable housing projects.

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The groundbreaking ceremony for Surbana Jurong Campus was held on 18 January 2019.

To drive innovation, the Campus will be a living lab with dedicated spaces for research and test-bedding of new ideas, including test-bedding future-ready solutions developed by the SJ-NTU Corporate Lab, a joint corporate laboratory set up by SJ, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU) and the National Research Foundation Singapore.

The Campus is designed to meet Singapore’s Building and Construction Authority’s (BCA) Green Mark Platinum Certification for Super Low Energy Building. It utilises solar photovoltaic technology that aims to yield around 340 MWH of renewable energy annually, and integrates features such as rain gardens and bio-swale to enhance water sustenance. It also boasts many other green technologies, including smart lighting control, underfloor air-distribution system, and predictive smart building control systems such as live energy and water management dashboards.

Tailored funding solution

SJ chose a ‘develop and lease’ model to fund the development of the Campus. It is being developed by Surbana Jurong Capital, the investment arm of SJ, which secured 100% funding for the development of the property and subsequent lease agreement for the entire land lease tenure from M&G Real Estate, one of the world’s leading financial solutions providers for real estate investors. This arrangement is said to have provided SJ with a compelling, long-term and cost-effective solution in developing the property for its use.

“The building of our global headquarters represents SJ’s growth ambition, and signals our continued confidence in Singapore as a strategic urban and infrastructure hub. With its myriad of new-generation working spaces, our new Campus is envisaged to be a conducive and lively environment for meaningful collaboration and to nurture innovation as we explore new ways to address urban challenges and reinvent cities. We also hope that a world-class workspace will further attract and retain global talents,” said Wong Heang Fine, group CEO of Surbana Jurong.

“Utilising the Group’s full range of capabilities to develop this project, the Surbana Jurong Campus will be a showcase of how we can support our clients to bring a development project from vision to reality. From planning, financing and design, through to delivery and management, we have a fully integrated and complete set of services to successfully deliver a project from concept to completion.”