Thomson Grand: Things you only realized when the development is up!

By The Folks @PropTalk - June 18, 2015 No Comments
After dropping our son off for his swim class yesterday afternoon the wife and I decided to swing over Thomson Grand to update ourselves on the construction progress.

For those who have been following our blog, we did a review of Thomson Grand during its launch back in October of 2011. The wife and I remembered being quite impressed with the quality of the project but less so with the $1,180+psf asking price for a 99-year development back then. How times have changed!

There is also a fair bit of controversy surrounding Thomson Grand as the developer has decided for some reason (copyright infringement maybe?) to drop the "Faberge" in the name of their clubhouse, which is designed in the shape of a Faberge Egg and is supposed to be the main showpiece of the project.

Three things caught our eyes immediately when we arrived at the site along Jalan Tambur off Upper Thomson Road:

#1  All 6 towers have been constructed up to their top levels while the external facade of all the strata houses facing Upper Thomson Road were more or less completed. The wife and I loved the modern contemporary look of the development and reckoned that the higher floors will have a fantastic view of the SICC golf courses and Lower Pierce reservoir. And you can clearly see the outline of the Faberge Clubhouse that has taken shape.

#2  The huge temple in front is too close to the development for our comfort. Matter of fact, we believed that the view of the ground and second floor units of Tower 25 and maybe even those of Tower 23 will be blocked by the temple.  

#3:  There is this big-ass house sited on elevated ground located diagonally across from the temple (we are not kidding - it looked really big!) that will probably pose a formidable challenge to the view of the lower-floor units in Towers 19 and 21.

The wife and I then decided to walk towards Upper Thomson Road to take a closer look at the strata houses.

We have to walk pass the entrance to the temple and this is what it looked like up close.

The wife and I are not familiar with this temple and its popularity with worshippers but it seems to be getting itself ready for a festival of some kind. The first concern that we have is that if temple does command a good following, the stretch of road along Jalan Tembur will be a nightmare to navigate during religious festivals (much like what the poor folks living around Sin Ming Ave have to contend with whenever Kong Meng San has an event). 

Although the main entrance/exit for Thomson Grand is supposedly located at Sin Ming Walk while the one at Jalan Tembur is just a "back access" and only for vehicle to exit teh development, residents will likely be stuck with a double whammy of blocked roads (i.e. at both Sin Ming Walk/Ave and Jalan Tembur) whenever a major festival (e.g. Qing Ming) happens.

The other concern that we have is on the Feng Shui aspect - the wife has read that it's considered bad Feng Shui for an apartment to be located directly behind a temple as you get "prayed at" ever so often. Prayers are typically reserved for gods/deities or the dead and since those living in apartment are probably not gods...

Back to the strata houses - the ones lining Upper Thomson Road seem to be rather close to the main road. And given the heavy traffic volume on this road, we are somewhat concerned with the amount of traffic noise that the strata homeowners may be subjected to.  

To satisfy our curiosity, we decided to stand along the pedestrian walkway just in front of the strata houses to record the noise generated by passing traffic. We were careful not to point our phone at passing vehicles in case we get mistaken as undercover agent from LTA/TP (thereby causing a multiple vehicle pile-up) so there is very little to see in the video. But this is what we managed to capture in terms of traffic noise.

Mind you, we are not even near to peak evening-hour traffic yet but based on what we have experienced in terms of traffic noise, the wife and I certainly hoped that the windows of these strata houses are double-glazed. But that's just us...let us know what you think.

One other observation on the strata house: The corner unit (No. 29) is built right beside the temple and given the extreme proximity, it will probably bear the blunt of the noise and human traffic generated during religious festivals. 

Hopefully the owner/occupier of this unit is not be too bothered by smoke from burning incenses and the sound and sights from occasional puppet shows/operas that the temple engages to perform for the deities. 


Final Thoughts: Based on what we have seen after our little excursion to Thomson Grand yesterday, the wife and I come to the age-old conclusion that there is always the risk of "the unknowns" when buying on plan. It is only when the development is substantially built that one will have a better appreciation of the unit's orientation and actual facing, which by that time may be too late. 

And if we are the developer, we will certainly be relieved that Thomson Grand is 100% sold as quite a number of the apartments and strata houses may find it challenging to locate buyers after they are built... quality notwithstanding.

Click on the link below to read our previous review on Thomson Grand:

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