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Yuhua the First Existing HDB Estate to Go Smart
Some 9,000 Yuhua residents living in 3,194 flats will be the first to experience ‘Smart Living’ in an existing HDB estate, in a move to realise Singapore’s Smart Nation vision. This pilot estate will see Smart features introduced to enhance residents’ quality of life. Residents can also look forward to a more liveable, efficient, sustainable and safe environment. Building on the sustainable improvements implemented in Yuhua under the HDB Greenprint, the introduction of Smart features will transform Yuhua into a Smart and Sustainable estate.
2 The demonstration estate in Yuhua is an extension of the lab trials on Smart technologies. Led jointly by HDB and IDA, in collaboration with other agencies, the lab trials were conducted in the HDB Centre of Building Research (CBR) in 1st half 2015. The lab trials allowed HDB to study and review the design and provision of the necessary digital infrastructure to support the use of Smart technologies in HDB flats. As an extension of the trials, HDB is now test-bedding some of the Smart solutions and devices in a live-in environment. This will enable HDB to gather residents’ feedback, and assess their receptiveness towards adopting Smart technologies.
3 From July this year, HDB, together with agencies such as IDA, MCI, MOH, NEA, EMA, PUB, Jurong Town Council, and commercial firms, will implement Smart features in Yuhua, both within the flat and in the neighbourhood. The various smart features will be implemented progressively till 2018.
4 The lived-in environment will enable residents to try out the smart solutions first hand, and give feedback on how these solutions could help them with their day-to-day living, so that these solutions can be adapted to best suit their needs. Additionally, it presents opportunities to build industry capabilities by fostering industry partnerships, as agencies and the industry collaborate with each other in integrating smart technologies and solutions that improve daily living.
5 As a start, 10 households of different profiles are expected to participate in the live testing of Smart devices and applications in their homes, for up to six months. These Smart solutions aim to help these families save more energy and water, and take better care of elderly dependents at home. Starting from September, residents will be able to test the usefulness and user-friendliness of the Smart solutions provided by commercial firms, and offer their feedback on such devices for further fine-tuning. The outcome of the trial will help determine how more households can benefit from the technologies.
6 IDA Executive Deputy Chairman, Mr Steve Leonard said, “Enhancing the quality of life for individuals is priority to us as we build towards a Smart Nation. Tech offers us an opportunity to provide personalised experiences, and testing smart features in a living environment helps us to gain good insights to what matters most to people – such as cost savings or greater peace of mind in rendering care. IDA is partnering with HDB closely on Smart Homes and this project will help us explore the offerings that can be made at scale, and unlock the full potential that Smart Homes can bring to homeowners and their families."
7 Within the neighbourhood, residents will benefit from improved estate services, with the help of sensors to monitor the performance of municipal services such as waste collection, and the consumption of electricity and water. Using the data collected, the Town Council can optimise maintenance cycles, pre-empt problems, or target problems at the source.
8 For example, sensors can map out the usual patterns of common services, such as the waste conveyance system, water and electrical sub-meters, and solar panels. A change in these patterns may signal a malfunction, or a potential problem, and a need to check on these facilities. Hence, the timely detection of maintenance issues will ensure that they are promptly resolved, minimising disruption to services for residents’ safety and convenience.
9 HDB CEO, Dr Cheong Koon Hean said, “This real-time test bed at Yuhua is a milestone in Singapore’s journey towards becoming a Smart nation. We want to bring the smart solutions to HDB residents, into their homes and into their neighbourhood. They will see that smart technologies are not some high-tech invention, but real-life solutions that can make their lives easier and better. Some of these smart solutions will come in very handy to help them in their daily living. With this test-bed, we hope to seek residents’ views and suggestions on how the smart solutions can be refined to better integrate with their day-to-day living. Technology can help create a more liveable, efficient, sustainable and safe living environment for our residents.”