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Temporary Revision to Guidelines for Temporary Workers’ Dormitories Within Industrial or Warehouse Developments

  Published: 10 February 2023
Circular No : URA/PB/2023/03-DCG


Who Should Know:
Developers, Building Owners and Qualified Persons

Effective Date:
10 February 2023

Temporary Revision to Guidelines for Temporary Workers’ Dormitories Within Industrial or Warehouse Developments

  1. To provide more temporary housing options for migrant workers while additional purpose-built dormitories are being constructed1, URA will temporarily revise the guidelines in Circular No. URA/PB/2016/14-PCUDG as follows:
  2. a. Applications for (i) new temporary workers’ dormitories, and (ii) increase in the number of workers in existing dormitories within 13 specified industrial areas outlined in Appendix A, can now be considered.

    b. Allowable quantum for ancillary/secondary uses can be increased from 40% to 49% to accommodate temporary worker’s dormitories.

    Applications within Specified Industrial Area

  3. On 19 September 2016, URA issued a circular listing 16 specified areas where new temporary workers’ dormitories (both ancillary and secondary) were not allowed, in order to minimise pressure on existing infrastructure in these areas. The full list can be found in Appendix A.

  4. With the temporary revision of the guidelines, applications for new temporary workers’ dormitories or to increase the number of workers in existing dormitories within 13 specified areas will now be assessed on an individual basis by URA and technical agencies. Applications may be supported only if the proposed workers’ dormitory meets prevailing guidelines and can be supported by existing infrastructure. There are currently 6 sub-areas within the 13 specified areas where the local sewer infrastructure cannot cater to any increase in workers, and hence applications for new dormitories or increase in number of workers in existing dormitories cannot be supported. These sub-areas are shown in red within the plans in Appendix A.

  5. Please note that any Temporary Permission (TP) granted by URA for applications within the specified areas will only be for up to three years and may not be renewed subsequently.

  6. URA and technical agencies will continue to evaluate new applications for workers’ dormitories within areas not listed in Appendix A.

  7. Increase in allowable Gross Floor Area use quantum for ancillary/secondary uses within Industrial or Warehouse Developments

  8. The allowable quantum for ancillary/secondary uses will be allowed to increase from 40% to 49% to accommodate temporary workers’ dormitory use. This will apply to all applications for new temporary workers’ dormitories or to increase the number of workers in existing dormitories, including those within specified areas.

  9. TP Renewals

  10. TP renewals for existing workers’ dormitories will continue to be assessed individually regardless of location, taking into consideration prevailing guidelines and input from technical agencies.

  11. Implementation

  12. Applicants should obtain prior clearances from relevant agencies such as JTC, LTA, NEA, PUB and SCDF where applicable, before making a planning application to URA. Please see Appendix B for the submission process for applications. When seeking clearance from LTA, applicants are to provide information as listed in Appendix C. MOM requires applicants that are granted TPs to obtain the necessary licences and approvals from MOM before commencing to operate any temporary workers’ dormitories.

  13. Applicants are reminded to adhere to prevailing Development Control guidelines, as well as requirements from landowners and technical agencies in the submission to URA.

  14. The temporary revision to the policy will take effect from 10 February 2023 for all applications for workers’ dormitories within industrial or warehouse developments, including Outline Applications. This revision will be reviewed periodically and may be removed or subject to further changes.

  15. I would appreciate it if you could convey the contents of this circular to the relevant members of your organization. We have updated the same in the Development Control HandbooksYou are advised to refer to these Handbooks for the most updated guidelines and procedures instead of referring to past circulars.

  16. For other information on the master plan, urban design guidelines, private property use and approval, car park locations and availability, private residential property transactions, and conservation areas and buildings, use URA SPACE (Service Portal and Community e-Services). This is an online portal packed with useful data and visualisation to help building professionals, business operators and the general public in their decision-making. It consolidates detailed information on land use and private property into a one-stop platform presented on geospatial maps. For feedback or enquiries, please email us.
Thank You.



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1Purpose-built dormitories are specifically designed and built with features to house and meet the needs of migrant workers.

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