Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/144130
Title: FORTRESS SERANGOON? RETHINKING NOTIONS OF GATING AND GATED COMMUNITIES IN SINGAPORE
Authors: Tan Yi Lan Grace
Keywords: Gated communities, Privatisation, Middle-class aspirations, Production of space, Housing in Singapore, HUDC estates
Issue Date: 2016
Citation: Tan Yi Lan Grace (2016). FORTRESS SERANGOON? RETHINKING NOTIONS OF GATING AND GATED COMMUNITIES IN SINGAPORE. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Western-centric research on gated communities often invoke neoliberalism as the key driver for gating, as well as assume that gating leads to negative social outcomes. However, geographers have increasingly called for a more nuanced and contextualised account for the spread of gated communities and their associated impacts, rather than to regard them as universally dystopian neoliberal spaces. As such, this thesis seeks to provide a more situated account of gated communities in Singapore through a study of the contingent reasons for privatisation and gating, the meaning of the gates, and its impacts. It first situates the development of gated communities within the developmental state ideology of Singapore before employing the use of two distinct yet complementary methods – semi-structured interviews and auto-photography – to elucidate the aspirations and experiences of residents living ina recently-privatised gated community. In contrast to existing research studying the reasons for residents moving into new gated communities, this thesis investigates the aspirations of homeowners in choosing to support the privatisation of their current public housing estate, thereby converting from a public to private estate. Through fieldwork conducted in the Serangoon North HUDC, my findings suggest that in the relatively safe urban context of Singapore where high-quality public housing dominates, privatisation and gating is closely related to an aspiration for ‘the good life’ rather than simply for security or segregation. Consequently, the privatised HUDC estate has been conceived by the state, and perceived by its residents, to be an exclusive and socially distinct space where middle-class aspirations for private homeownership are fulfilled. However, such conceptualisations of space are mediated by the lived space of residents as the realities of gated living do not always equate to ‘the good life’.
URI: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/144130
Appears in Collections:Bachelor's Theses (Restricted)

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