Singapore, a small country where the scarcity of land space has modelled the country’s development of tall building structure to maximise land use for both homes and offices.

It’s not uncommon for a person to experience slight “swaying” when standing at the high floor of a high rise building and that feeling is more intense when the building is higher. Not to worry as these are normal occurrences in tall buildings. Most high-rise buildings are built to withstand such swaying movements due to the higher wind velocity at higher altitude. The building will not collapse, unless it has been built poorly without compliance to safety standards and regulations.

In Singapore, the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) ensures that building are designed, constructed and maintained in a safe manner by putting in place high safety standards for the built environment sector. There are many elements of building safety to consider just for a single building structure. From the land that it is built on, to the structures that hold up and support the building, to the materials used to construct the building, as well as the window panels, doors, tiles, etc. Every part of the building will need to undergo safety checks, testing and inspection before the building or structure is deemed safe for human occupation.

Even after the building has been deemed as safe, regular inspections are required. Periodic testing and inspection of buildings is important to ensure that the building structure and condition is still safe for continued use or occupancy after several years of wear and tear.

The interval of the inspection will depend on the nature of the building. In Singapore, the BCA requires the safety inspection to be done every 5 years for non-residential buildings, and 10 years for residential buildings (excluding landed and temporary buildings). In March 2020, a new rule was passed under the Building Control Act which requires the inspection to be done every 7 years for buildings older than 20 years and taller than 13 metres.

With such high safety standards and stringent regulations put in place, the buildings in Singapore are definitely safe, regardless of their height.


Photo by Mike Enerio on Unsplash