Speech by BCA CEO Dr. John Keung at the BCA-REDAS Built Environment and Property Prospects Seminar 2015 at Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel

Thursday, 8 January 2015

Mr Lee Yi Shyan, 
Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry and National Development 

Mr Quek See Tiat 
Chairman, BCA

Mr Chia Ngiang Hong 
1st Vice-President, Real Estate Developers' Association of Singapore

Distinguished guests

Ladies and gentlemen

A very happy new year to everyone, and welcome to the BCA-REDAS Built Environment and Property Prospects Seminar 2015. 

We have been jointly organising this Seminar with REDAS since 1990. Over the years, this Seminar has become a key milestone event for the built environment sector to usher in the New Year. It is also an excellent occasion for us to share with the industry our assessment of the sector's prospects in the current year and the next few years. Our Guest of Honour, Minister Lee, will let you have a glimpse of this in a short while. 

Before that, let me recap some of the key events last year and share with you on how we see this further unfold in the next few years. 

An integrated approach with BIM technology 
First, I would like to focus on one of the key integrating and productive tools for the entire sector, which is the Building Information Modelling (BIM). In the last three years, BCA's Centre for Construction IT has been working very closely with the industry and the national BIM Steering Committee to build BIM capability and proliferate the use of BIM by our industry professionals. 

I will not dwell on how BIM could help improve design and make construction work more productive. Instead, I would like to share with you some new developments of our own BIM journey. We are walking the talk by using BIM technology at BCA Academy, our training arm. With the objective of building a smart campus, the BCA Academy has recently embarked on a BIM-based energy and facility management pilot project that uses smart sensors to collect data, and monitor and optimise its building systems. 

To further promote a mindset change in our industry towards an integrated approach in design and construction, BCA Academy partnered Stanford University's Center for Integrated Facility Engineering, a leading BIM and construction management institution, and has offered two training programmes, one at the leadership or CEO level and another at the middle management level. I encourage all of you to find out more about these courses at our Academy and attend one of these courses. 

Promoting Universal Design, accessibility for all
Second, beyond using smart technologies to improve the way we work in the industry, BCA has also developed smart applications to benefit stakeholders and the public. For instance, to bring Universal Design closer to Singaporeans, BCA's online search portal for user-friendly buildings in Singapore has recently been extended to a smartphone application. This was launched last year to allow users to access extensive information on the accessibility of more than 2,800 buildings in Singapore. It also includes an augmented reality feature which maps out the most accessible route between two locations, thus enhancing users' mobility. I hope building owners will continue to make improvements to their buildings so that they can be as user-friendly as possible to various groups of users.

Our green building movement recognised internationally
Third, BCA has long been a champion for greening our buildings and encouraging key stakeholders across the construction value chain to go green. To date, close to 2,300 buildings are certified with the BCA Green Mark, accounting for more than 27% of Singapore's total gross floor area. I would like to thank all who have supported this global movement and I look forward to continued partnership with you to move towards our goal of having at least 80% of all the buildings in Singapore certified under the BCA Green Mark scheme by 2030. 

Besides focusing on the 'hardware' of greening buildings through the adoption of technologies and energy efficient designs, BCA launched the third Green Building Masterplan last year to create greater emphasis on the 'software' or eco-centric behaviour in building occupants. This is important as a recently completed study by BCA pointed out clearly that building occupants can take up a huge chunk of electricity consumption. Therefore, we need to work together to educate building occupants on the importance of adopting energy-efficient measures in their buildings to reap these benefits. 

To conclude, let me acknowledge and thank our long-time co-organiser, REDAS, for holding this annual Prospects Seminar jointly with BCA. I look forward to another year of continued support and partnership to make productivity a way of life in our industry. 

Let me wish everyone a great 2015 ahead.

Thank you.


Public sector projects to sustain construction demand in 2015

Portable document format version of the speech is also available (29KB .pdf).

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