The REDAS logo stands for
- Development, the heritage of REDAS, represented by the Blue Pillar;
- Integration of the natural and built environment, the Green Curve expressing the sweeping landscape;
- Dynamism and prosperity, the Red Sun reflecting the dawn of a new era and the global outlook of REDAS.
The Association had a unique beginning. Founded in November 1958 by a small dedicated group of real estate developers who felt the need to band together to raise standards and promote the industry’s interests, the association was then known as the Singapore Land & Housing Developers’ Association.
The association was officially registered on 30th March 1959 with 25 members. The Founder-President was Mr Lee Kim Tah BBM(L) and the first Management Committee to work with him comprised Messrs Tay Beng Swee (Vice-President), H G Wong (Honorary Secretary), Lee Chin Chuan (Honorary Treasurer) and P F Chen, Chan Wah Chip and Seah Boon Heng (Committee Members). Singapore became self-governing in the same year.
In the early sixties, some developers took advantage of the steep increase in demand for housing by collecting more advance payments than they should before the completion of their projects. No definite completion date or building specifications were incorporated in the Sale and Purchase (S&P) Agreement. Complaints subsequently drove the government to control the activities of housing developers.
The Association studied the proposals for the guidelines put forward by the authorities and recommended alternatives or changes. After much discussion and negotiation, the final form of the government legislation took shape in the form of the Housing Developers (Control and Licensing) Act of 1965.
The Act was passed primarily to protect buyers and to commit all developers to use the Agreement for S&P approved by the Controller of Housing (COH). However, difficulties arose when the COH was flooded with all forms of agreement and approval was made impossible. The Association stepped in and appointed legal experts to help the drafting of a standard S&P Agreement form to be approved by the Minister. It was a landmark legislation and quite rightly, the Association played an important role in making sure it took its members’ interest into consideration and assisted in its smooth implementation.
REDAS : A SYMBOL OF GROWTH & STRENGTH
In 1972, the Association joined the Asia Pacific Real Estate Federation (APREF), an organisation devoted to regional co-operation among real estate developers in the Asia Pacific region. Our longest serving President, the late Mr Hanson Kwauk, was elected APREF President in 1974. In 1998, Mr Daniel Teo was elected APREF President for 2 years.
As the Singapore economy continued to grow, housing developers extended their activities to building industrial and commercial spaces. In 1977, the association changed its name to Real Estate Developers’ Association of Singapore (REDAS) to further strengthen its foundation of building public trust, improve standards, and promote design quality in the local marketplace for real estate development.
With the renaming, the objects and rules of the association were constituted and appropriately filed with the Registry of Societies. The REDAS Constitution was established. The objectives were refined to incorporate emphasis on building better quality properties, mechanisation of building methods and improving existing development schemes for the betterment of our society at large. REDAS also provides conciliation panel services for purchasers of residential property.
AN INCLUSIVE & PROGRESSIVE ASSOCIATION
underscores the role the industry plays in the larger economy as a progressive, dynamic and constructive force of significance to the nation’s gross domestic product.
Today, REDAS is an established institution plugged into a global network of like-minded organizations dedicated to excellence, creativity and enterprise in the real estate industry. A REDAS member was elected the FIABCI World President from 2002 to 2003.
RAISING THE BAR
The Association has also scaled up its operations significantly to enhance its leading role in the real estate development industry. Apart from more networking events, seminars and mission trips for the benefits of the community and our industry, training and learning programmes are organised to raise the bar of professionalism, enhance industry development capability and strengthen real estate knowledge.
In 2013, REDAS stepped up its Corporate Social Responsibility programme and set up the REDAS Foundation. More activities will be organised to raise funds for charitable organizations, in particular children's beneficiaries, where the monies go towards enhancing quality of life through education and training.
Over the years, our real estate developers have continued to contribute unstintingly, working hand in glove to develop Singapore’s landscape. The Association initiated the inaugural REDAS Lifetime Achievement Award to honour and recognise the achievements and contributions of our real estate pioneers. In 2014, the inaugural award was presented to our Patron Mr Kwek Leng Beng for his outstanding achievements and significant contributions to the community and the built environment.
OUR COLLECTIVE ACHIEVEMENTS
REDAS members have garnered international awards for outstanding work from prestigious international competitions such as the FIABCI Prix d’Excellence (since 1997), and have consistently won awards in the last six years for various real estate categories ranging from residential to office and retail. For design quality, REDAS members have bagged awards under the first International Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) awards, the Urban Land Institute and the Aga Khan Prize for Architecture.
REDAS members have also been extending their entrepreneurial reach beyond our shores by exporting their development expertise through ventures into other cities in Asia, riding on the Singapore brand and reputation for quality and integrity. Members have expanded into countries such as China, Japan, Australia, Vietnam, Thailand, India, and have also moved further afield into far flung markets like Belgium, France, Sweden, Russia, Spain, and the Middle-Eastern bloc.
In the international arena, Singapore continues to be a desirable place in which to live. We were ranked sixth on the Economist Intelligence Unit’s where-to-be-born index 2013 which identified the best places in the world for a baby to be born in. This was based on indicators such as economic opportunity, health standards and political freedom, and "quality of life". This was yet another accolade for Singapore, reaffirming the country as one of the most liveable, cosmopolitan cities in the world. It is a nation that keeps growing from strength to strength.
A PARTNER IN NATION BUILDING
The Association actively engages regulators, policy makers and private sector partners to promote best practices and to support the growth of a vibrant and progressive industry for the creation of quality real estate in Singapore.
A noteworthy development is the increasing scope and breadth of consultations between REDAS and government bodies and related agencies, borne out of recognizing the importance of the real estate sector and its impact on the national agenda. Aside from representing the interests of developers in dealings with public agencies and other members of the industry, REDAS serves as a critical voice on the formulation of new legislation and regulations affecting the industry.
With rapid urbanization and a growing population, Singapore’s focus has shifted from infrastructure development to creating environments that promote economic growth, innovation, and quality living. Both public and private sectors have collectively endeavored to achieve this balance despite it being one of the densest countries in the world.
New growth precincts and trans-urban centres will emerge. These growth areas will create demand and real estate value as property end-users and investors seek connected, versatile, and functional spaces across diverse real estate segments, from residential to hotels, commercial, industrial and other mixed-use development opportunities.
Developers have taken on a key role in shaping this. We take a more multifaceted approach to creating vibrant and efficient work-live-play spaces. With new lifestyles and needs borne from the country’s socio-economic progress, we have had to be especially creative, challenging physical confines and notions of space in land-scarce Singapore.
In our world today, the rules of engagement have changed. Individuals are more connected, increasingly vocal, and empowered to share and to tap the collective wisdom of the community. Businesses have begun to look at the innovation and co-creation of solutions and production. More importantly, partnership and collaboration have become even more critical in the way governments, businesses and communities operate and engage others.
Our success as a nation hinges on stronger collaboration between the private and public sectors in the context of addressing global and domestic challenges. The REDAS-Government private-public-partnership continues to appreciate our people’s aspirations for distinctiveness and identity in our urban living spaces.
REDAS continues to seek out beneficial associations with the world community of real estate developers and widen the engagement and involvement of our members through research and surveys, educational courses and regular seminars, networking and sharing sessions, small group and online communication, business trips and industry dialogues.