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Neighbourhood Estate Guide: Is Serangoon The New Central Of Singapore?

There’s not much contest as to whether Serangoon is an accessible and central location.

Surrounded by popular estates – Sengkang, Hougang, Toa Payoh, Ang Mo Kio and Bishan – on its North, South, East, and West, there’s not much contest as to whether Serangoon is an accessible and central location.

It is a residential town located in the North-East Region of Singapore. A few North-East MRT train stations are located in Serangoon, including Kovan, Serangoon, Woodleigh, Lorong Chuan, and Little India.

 Image Credit: AridCeption

Serangoon planning area has seven subzones:

  • Serangoon Central
  • Lorong Chuan
  • Upper Paya Lebar
  • Serangoon Gardens
  • Serangoon North
  • Seletar Hills
  • Serangoon North Industrial Estate

Read Also: Neighbourhood Estate Guide: Why Hougang Is No Longer The Backwater Of Singapore

The History Of Serangoon

During the post-World War II years to the 1960s, Serangoon was home to a mix of old kampung settlements, villages, rubber plantations, and other agricultural activities. It served as an industrial area for cattle farming and the brick klin trade.

The name Serangoon has anecdotal origins. There are two main accounts that attribute to how the area derived its name. One common account attributed the name to be derived from “Ranggong”, the Malay name for a bird commonly found in the riverine swamps around the Serangoon River. The numeral ‘one’ or ‘satu’ in Malay abbreviated to ‘sa’, led to the name ‘Saranggong’, which Serangoon was formerly known by. Another account suggests that it was derived from ‘di-serang dengan gong’, a Malay phrase which translates to ‘to surround with gongs’, possibly a reference to the use of gongs to scare away animals from the forested area of Serangoon.

Image Credit: ThoughtMoments

Serangoon Road is one of Singapore’s earliest built roads, and parts of its history can be seen today at Little India, which the long Serangoon Road passes through.

Serangoon Gardens has over 40 road names that are named after British towns, like Cardiff and Worthing. It is also formerly known by the Chinese as “Ang Sar Lee” for the red zinc roofs that sheltered the houses for the estate.

The mature housing estate was enlivened when Nex, a shopping mall integrated with a bus interchange, the Serangoon North East Line, and the completion of the Serangoon Circle Line Station.

Serangoon Central

Properties in this area surround the popular shopping mall Nex, which houses Serangoon MRT and the bus interchange.

There is a mix of public housing – including maisonettes – and private housing like condominiums.

Lorong Chuan

The quieter side of Serangoon, where private properties, a few industrial buildings, and Nanyang Junior College is located.

It is also close to Braddell Road, with road links with easy access to Toa Payoh and Bishan estates.

Serangoon Gardens

One of the oldest private residential estates in Singapore, this quaint little spot in Serangoon has continued to be a popular location for food and recreational options.

The properties surrounding this enclave are mostly landed homes, with freehold lease. Some small roads lead you to other towns in Singapore, including to Ang Mo Kio and Braddell.

Seletar Hills

This is an area with mostly landed homes from semi-detached house to terrace house, and detached houses. The leasehold range from freehold to 99 years.

It is located along Jalan Peradun in Serangoon.

Serangoon North

Sandwiched between Ang Mo Kio, Serangoon Gardens, and Hougang, the properties here are mostly residential.

It is mostly dominated by HDB flats, with some landed homes fringing at the area closer to Serangoon Gardens. The Serangoon North Industrial Estate is located close to this area.

Accessibility In Serangoon

The bus and train interchange at Serangoon is integrated with the Nex shopping mall. The bus interchange is currently air conditioned and located at one part of Nex. It was previously moved from an outdoor site next to the Nex mall.

Image Credit: Mercatus

There are two MRT train lines that sit at Serangoon Station – the North East Line and the Circle Line. The NEL is the first train line to feature WiFi coverage at all its stations. It is the first completely underground line in Singapore.

The Circle Line was opened in 2009 and both train lines have direct access into the mall. The convenience of the train lines bring Serangoon residents minutes away to Dhoby Ghaut as well as the West side of Singapore and the Marina Bay area.

The Cross Island Line will introduce 12 new stations by 2030, including Serangoon North MRT Station. This is expected to further boost the property value of the public and private housing near the train station.

Serangoon North will connect to the NEL at Hougang and Punggol Stations, making them both interchanges.

Existing Public Transport Serangoon MRT – North East Line
Serangoon MRT – Circle Line
Serangoon Interchange – Feeder buses 315, 317
Upcoming Public Transport Serangoon North MRT Station – Cross Island Line (~By 2030)
Tavistock MRT Station – Cross Island Line (~By 2030)

Housing Options In Serangoon

With the wide variety of local and international schools available in the area, coupled with a range of leisure and dining options at Nex, Serangoon Gardens, Chomp Chomp Food Centre and Wimbly Lu, the area is a popular choice for home dwellers.

Serangoon houses a HDB resident population of 68,800 people, with close to 22,000 flats in the town. The total population is estimated to be at 120,000, which means that many residents here stay in private properties.

Image Credit: SRX

With the location being accessible to all four corners of Singapore, it is also a popular choice among homeowners looking for a more central location. You can find rustic maisonette units that grant access to Serangoon MRT Station in less than three minutes.

Condos in Serangoon offer value as they are located centrally yet not charging a premium compared to Bishan condos, for example. Some condos near Serangoon MRT Station include Sunglade, Casa Cambio, The Yardley and Forest Woods Residences.

Image Credit: Affinity At Serangoon

Certain parcels of land in Serangoon houses landed homes. There are landed homes within a few minutes’ walk from Serangoon MRT station.

Known as one of the oldest private residential estates in Singapore, Serangoon Gardens provide a luxurious enclave of landed homes and easy access to food, banking, and shopping options. It is flanked by three roads – Ang Mo Kio, Lorong Chuan, and Yio Chu Kang Road.

Read Also: Neighbourhood Estate Guide: Smart Forest Living In Tengah – Singapore’s First Car-Free HDB Town Centre

Recreation For Serangoon Residents

Food is certainly not something that is lacking in the Serangoon neighbourhood, with plenty of popular eats located in this area.

The centrally-located Nex shopping mall is one of the largest malls in the North-East region of Singapore. The mall is a favourite hangout for residents and visitors alike with its comprehensive offerings of retail, entertainment and dining options, and its accessibility to public transport.

It has seven storeys of entertainment, retail, lifestyle and food and beverage. There are more than two supermarkets in the mall, including NTUC Fairprice Xtra and Cold Storage, which are both open for 24 hours. Large food and retail chains have also established their presence in this popular neighbourhood mall, including Daiso, Pet Lovers Centre, Genki Sushi, Ichiban Boshi, Beauty In A Pot, and Ding Tai Fung.

Image Credit: Singapore Travel Hub

You can take feeder bus 315 or 317 and get to Serangoon Gardens in a few minutes. The quaint neighbourhood houses some of the most popular eateries that draws crowds even outside of Serangoon into the area after work and during weekends.

Chomp Chomp Food Centre is a hot favourite, with its locally famous stalls selling hokkien mee, chicken wings, and sambal stingray. At Serangoon Gardens, there are also famous prata places like RK Eating House and another newer prata establishment Srisun Express.

There is also MyVillage at Serangoon Gardens which has many recreational services, a supermarket, nail and hair salons, and casual and restaurant food options.

Image Credit: The Garden Residences

There are also eateries and shophouses nestled within the private residential areas of Serangoon, along Serangoon Garden Way as well as at Jalan Riang, which resides the popular cafe Wimbly Lu.

The feeder buses also take you deeper into Serangoon North, where the Serangoon North Village is located and is well known for its rows of pet shops and veterinary clinics.

Prior to the pandemic, bird hobbyists used to gather there to hang the cages at a corner and do some bird watching. The spectacle drew retirees and pet lovers.

Beyond that, there are also places for sports and activities, such as the Serangoon Sports Centre, Serangoon Stadium, and Serangoon Swimming Complex. There is also the Serangoon Gardens Country Club for those who want club membership experiences.

 Image Credit: Serangoon Gardens Country Club

There are also multiple parks in Serangoon, including the Serangoon Community Park, Serangoon Sunshine Park, Haus Linear Park, Chartwell Drive Park, and Tavistock Avenue Park.

Education Options In Serangoon

Given that Serangoon is a mature housing estate with plenty of schools, it appeals to families with schooling children. The schools in the area are at robust housing estate spots and are well spread out across Serangoon.

There are a total of five Primary Schools, four Secondary Schools, and Nanyang Junior College.

MOE Primary School    
No Name of School Location
1 CHIJ Our Lady Of Good Counsel 2C Burghley Dr, Singapore 558979
2 Rosyth School 21 Serangoon North Ave 4, Singapore 555855
3 St Gabriel’s Primary School 220 Lor Chuan, Singapore 556742
4 Yangzheng Primary School 15 Serangoon Ave 3, Singapore 556108
5 Zhonghua Primary School 12 Serangoon Ave 4, Singapore 556095
MOE Secondary School    
No Name of School Location
1 Pei Cai Secondary School 10 Serangoon Ave 4, Singapore 556094
2 Serangoon Garden Secondary School 21 Serangoon North Ave 1, Singapore 555889
3 St Gabriel’s Secondary School 24 Serangoon Ave 1, Singapore 556140
4 Zhonghua Secondary School 13 Serangoon Avenue 3, 556123
1 Nanyang Junior College 128 Serangoon Ave 3, Singapore 556111

Business Activity In Serangoon

As Serangoon is mainly a residential estate, there are only a few zones carved out for industrial or factory use.

The Serangoon North Industrial Estate is located close to the Serangoon North residential estate and companies in the light and clean industries such as precision engineering, electronics, logistics, and warehousing are located here. Notable firms in the area include Cambridge Industrial Trust, NTT Datacentre, Lovet, and AEM Singapore.

There are also some car workshops and car accessories stores along Serangoon North Ave 4, such as Carstom, Enzo Singapore, and R69 Ultimate Detailing.

Some industrial activities can also be found along Lorong Chuan. The New Tech Park, ranked as a high-tech B1 industrial building, is one of those along the stretch that is close to the Australian International School Singapore. The building is suitable for IT, research and development, media, infocomms tech, and e-commerce companies.

Featured Image Credit: Frasers Property Group

Read Also: HDB Price Guide: Most Expensive HDB Estates In 2022

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