• How does HDB help households who require direct lift access?

    HDB introduced the Lift Upgrading Programme (LUP) in 2001 to provide residents with direct lift access to their flats. At the start of the programme, there were more than 5,300 HDB blocks without full lift access. Among them, more than 1,000 blocks were initially found to be unfeasible for LUP due to cost or technical constraints.

    Over the years, HDB has implemented innovative technical solutions to provide such blocks with lift access. Some examples of solutions that have been successfully implemented include lifts that do not have a machine room1 at the top of the shafts (i.e. machine room-less lifts), and the use of smaller “home lifts” which are suitable for low-rise blocks. Another example is the creation of new entry points to residents’ units through existing balconies or living rooms, for flats in half-landing blocks. In this way, the lift landing at each floor could be connected to the new entrances, bringing lift access right to their door steps.

    Through these efforts, the vast majority of the 5,300 blocks have since been provided with direct lift access through the LUP.

    Why can’t LUP be implemented in all blocks that need direct lift access?

    Currently, there remain about 150 blocks where it is still not possible to implement LUP due to prohibitive costs, or existing technical or site constraints, e.g. where there are existing structures that obstruct the installation of new lift shafts. Nonetheless, we will continue to explore possible ways to bring direct lift access to residents of these blocks.

    In the meantime, residents who are in urgent need of direct lift access due to medical conditions or mobility reasons will be eligible for a Lift access Housing Grant (LHG) of up to $30,000 to help them move into a new HDB flat or a resale flat. Such residents can approach HDB, and we will see how best to assist them.

    Read our other HDBSpeaks article to find out more about HDB’s suite of upgrading programmes.


    1 A lift machine-room refers to a room that houses the machinery and electrical controls that operate a lift. Conventional lifts were constructed with a machine-room at the top of the lift shaft.