Published Date: 09 May 2016
At the Committee of Supply debate in April 2016, Senior Minister of State for National Development, Desmond Lee said that the Government would do more to support HDB shops, following a review of the Revitalisation of Shops (ROS) Scheme.
2 Today, HDB unveiled the details of the enhanced ROS scheme:
To allow HDB shops to enjoy a wider scope of upgrading works, the ROS upgrading budget for each shop will be increased by 75%, from $20,000 to $35,000 per shop.
To encourage more HDB shops to participate and benefit from the ROS scheme, shop owners’ share of the upgrading cost will be reduced from 50% to 20%, and capped at $5,000.HDB and the Town Councils will co-fund the balance 80%, capped at $30,000 per sold shop. For rental shops, HDB and the Town Councils will continue to bear 100% of the upgrading cost.
To further support HDB shops to kick-start their revitalisation efforts, HDB will provide a new funding of up to $10,000, for Merchant Associations (MAs) to appoint a consultant to help them in their ROS upgrading.
To drive the formation of Merchants’ Association (MA), which play a pivotal role in rejuvenating heartland shops, HDB will introduce a new Start-up Fund of $10,000, to encourage HDB shops without a MA to form one.
To support the Merchants’ Associations (MAs) in organising promotional events to attract shoppers, HDB will continue to co-fund up to 50% of the expenditure for such promotional events, subject to an annual cap of $500 per sold shop and $1,000 per rental shop.
Tenants will also continue to enjoy up to one month of rent-free period, when they renovate their shops in conjunction with the ROS scheme.
Review of Revitalisation of Shops Scheme
3 Since its inception in Nov 2007, the ROS scheme has benefitted 4,684 shops from 54 HDB Town/Neighbourhood Centres island-wide, covering more than 50% of such centres. Of these, 16 HDB Town/Neighbourhood Centres have completed upgrading and another 8 centres are at various stages of upgrading. In addition, more than 300 promotional events have been organised by the MAs under the scheme.
4 In 2015, MND set up the Revitalise Heartland Shops Committee, comprising MAs, retailers and grassroots organisations, to look into how the ROS scheme could be refined, and to recommend ways to enhance the living and shopping environment for both residents and retailers.
5 The committee found that the ROS scheme remained a useful and important scheme to upgrade HDB shops in the town and neighbourhood centres. These shops serve the daily needs of residents and are a focal point for residents to interact and bond. The committee has made several recommendations to enhance the scheme, and encourage more retailers to take it up. MND has accepted the recommendations by the committee, as detailed below.
Shops Enjoy More Funding, Pay Smaller Share for Upgrading Cost
6 HDB will increase the ROS upgrading budget from $20,000 to $35,000 per shop. This increase in budget will allow the retailers to expand the scope of ROS upgrading works.
7 To encourage more shop owners to participate in the ROS scheme and benefit from it, shop owners’ share of the upgrading cost will be reduced from 50% to 20% and capped at $5,000. HDB and the Town Councils will co-fund the balance 80% of the upgrading cost, or up to $30,000 per shop. For rental shops, HDB and the Town Councils will continue to bear the full upgrading cost i.e. 100% of the costs.
New Funding for Engagement of Consultants & Formation of MAs
8 To support MAs in drawing up ROS upgrading plans that address their localised challenges and needs, HDB will provide a new funding of up to $10,000, for the appointment of consultants to help them. The consultants could conduct surveys among the retailers to better understand their needs, develop possible concepts and translate them into artists’ impressions and also plan what needs to be done at various stages of ROS, to ensure success in the project.
9 HDB also recognises that MAs play a pivotal role in driving the revitalisation efforts to enhance the vibrancy of HDB Town/Neighbourhood Centres. Hence, HDB has introduced a new Start-up Fund of $10,000, to encourage retailers from centres without an MA to form one. HDB will also work closely with The Federation of Merchants’ Associations, Singapore (FMAS) to assist the retailers in doing so.
10 Eligible MAs will continue to enjoy co-funding for promotional events to inject greater vibrancy to HDB Town/Neighbourhood Centres. Tenants will also continue to enjoy up to one month of rent-free period, when they renovate their shops in conjunction with ROS. To qualify for the rent-free period, the tenants must be a member of the MA and have rented the shop from HDB for at least 6 years. Please refer to Annex for a summary of the enhancements and more details on ROS scheme.
11 Moving forward, the Government will provide annual funding of about $15 million under the enhanced ROS scheme, to help heartland shops enhance their vibrancy and competitiveness. For enquiries, HDB shop owners and tenants can call the HDB Commercial Properties toll-free line at 1800-866 3073.