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Framework for Managing Bonus Gross Floor Area Incentives

  Published: 29 April 2009
Circular No : URA/PB/2009/03-DCG
Fax : 6227 4792

This circular is to be read in conjunction with Circular URA/PB/2015/12-CUDG dated 31 Dec 2015


Who Should Know:
Architects, engineers, developers, building owners, property consultants.

Effective Date:
With effect from 29 Jul 2009

This circular gives the details on the maximum bonus gross floor area (GFA) for a site allowed beyond the Master Plan GPR. The framework provides for a sustainable way of managing the various bonus GFA schemes to ensure that the planning intentions for an area are achieved.

Details of guideline


  1. Currently, URA has a number of bonus gross floor area (GFA) incentives to encourage the provision of specific building features or uses (eg. balconies in residential and hotel developments; lighting in Central Business District (CBD) and Marina Centre; and art installations in Orchard, CBD and Marina Centre). These bonus GFA incentives are given to help realise various planning objectives. For example, the balcony scheme encourages skyrise greenery while the lighting incentive scheme helps to enhance our city’s image and highlight the distinctive Singapore skyline. However, as such bonus GFA are allowed over and above the Master Plan Gross Plot Ratio (GPR) control for a site, they add to the development bulk and intensity beyond what was planned for. If not properly managed, this may cause distortions in the approved GPR and put additional strain on the planned public infrastructure and services in the area, which is based on the Master Plan GPR.
  1. New bonus GFA incentives (e.g. the new Green Mark GFA incentive scheme) may be introduced from time to time to meet certain planning objectives. However, there is a limit to the amount of additional bulk and intensity that can be accommodated for a site and collectively within an area, without adversely affecting the effectiveness of GPR and GFA as planning tools. In view of these concerns, URA carried out a review with the aim of better managing the cumulative effects of Bonus GFA.

Managing bonus GFA incentive schemes

  1. URA will consolidate all existing and future bonus GFA schemes into a menu of bonus GFA schemes and introduce an overall budget of 10% for additional GFA allowed beyond the Master Plan under bonus GFA schemes for each development site. Developers and QPs will have a free hand to adopt the appropriate schemes applicable for their sites within the overall budget of 10%, subject to compliance with the guidelines of the individual schemes.

  2. We have studied and consulted the professional institutes that a budget of 10% for bonus GFA schemes would be sufficient to meet the industry’s needs. Our survey of the projects that have applied for bonus GFA incentives shows that the current utilization of bonus GFA is generally well below 10%.

  3. Under this framework, for a site that qualifies for multiple bonus GFA incentive schemes, URA will leave it to the developers and QPs to determine which bonus GFA scheme(s) to adopt and the quantum of bonus GFA to use under each scheme (subject to compliance with the guidelines of the individual schemes), as long as the cumulative bonus GFA is within the overall budget of 10% above the Master Plan GPR. This will allow the developers and QPs the freedom to choose the schemes that best fit their business and operational needs.
  4. As per current practice, all additional GFA granted under the bonus GFA incentive schemes will not form the future development potential of the site upon redevelopment.



  1. To give the industry sufficient notice to adapt to the changes, the overall bonus GFA budget of 10% for additional GFA allowed beyond the Master Plan under bonus GFA schemes for each development site will take effect from 29 Jul 2009 and will apply to all new development applications for new erection, amendment and A&A received on or after the effective date. Such formal development applications (which do not include Outline Applications) submitted before the effective date and resulting in the grant of Provisional Permission with bonus GFA exceeding 10% will continue to be evaluated without being subject to the overall bonus GFA budget of 10%.

  2. I would appreciate it if you could convey the contents of this circular to the relevant members of your organisation. If you or your members have any queries concerning this circular, please do not hesitate to call our DCG Enquiry Line at Tel: 6223 4811 or e-mail us at ura_dcd@ura.gov.sg. We would be pleased to answer queries on this, and any other development control matter. For your information, the past circulars to the professional institutes are available from our website http://www.ura.gov.sg.

Thank You.



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