Media Resouces
Mapletree Creates Another Destination for Global Best in St James Power Station
28 Nov 2019

Singapore – Mapletree Investments Pte Ltd (“Mapletree”) is pleased to announce that St James Power Station (“SJPS”) will be transformed into a technology centre with a heritage gallery. This is timely as it will become one of the first elements in the wider “live, work, play” transformation plans for the Greater Southern Waterfront as announced by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during the National Day Rally on 18 August 2019. 

When completed in the second half of next year, the newly restored and retrofitted power station will provide about 110,000 square feet of space for Dyson, a leading global technology company. SJPS will increase Dyson’s research and engineering footprint in Singapore two-fold, and sit at the centre of its ambitious global expansion.

Befitting its history, the restored monument will house a Heritage Gallery in one of its distinctive chimneys to showcase its contribution to Singapore as a power station. Complementing that, Mapletree will also create a Heritage Trail around the monument featuring maritime artefacts. These plans will be further developed in collaboration with Dyson to demonstrate their care and passion for historical sites as well as their commitment to Singapore and SJPS.

Ms Amy Ng, Regional Chief Executive Officer, South East Asia & Group Retail at Mapletree said, “SJPS is a treasured and iconic national monument with a rich history. As we move forward, Mapletree aims to revitalise the monument as part of the upcoming Greater Southern Waterfront development. From its origins as Singapore’s first coal-fired power station, SJPS will soon find a new lease of life as a centre of innovation, generating exciting ideas and future technologies.”

Jim Rowan, CEO of Dyson said, “The spaces in which we work have always been important to us – they provide the inspiration and environment to nurture ideas. After 12 years of growth in Singapore, continuing expansion in the UK, and growing sales globally, we have outgrown our current technology centre in Singapore. The historic St James Power Station will be a most inspiring backdrop for Dyson’s people. It will be a hive for our research and development endeavours, as we focus on great technology breakthroughs. I’m very confident that the ingenuity of our engineers and scientists here in Singapore – and the many more who will join them – will continue to drive Dyson forward all around the globe.”

SJPS will be integrated with the larger plans for the entire HarbourFront Precinct – owned and managed by Mapletree – to harness the synergy from the wider transformation of the Greater Southern Waterfront, especially when plans for Pulau Brani and the surroundings are activated after the port moves out.

Mapletree has successfully rejuvenated the HarbourFront and Alexandra Precincts through the redevelopment of the exhibition halls of the former World Trade Centre to VivoCity, and the old Alexandra Distripark and The Comtech into Mapletree Business City. Both Precincts have become destinations for international brands and businesses. Dyson’s headquarters at SJPS will be yet another testimony to Mapletree’s success as a Precinct Developer with the capability to conceptualise, develop a premium portfolio of assets, and attract the global best multinational corporations and institutions.


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Photo Credits: Mapletree Investments


St James Power Station


Grace Sung    
Xabryna Kek
Senior Executive, Corporate Communications   Senior Executive, Corporate Communications
Tel: +65 6804 8474   Tel: +65 6377 4608
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Mapletree is a leading real estate development, investment, capital and property management company headquartered in Singapore. Its strategic focus is to invest in markets and real estate sectors with good growth potential. By combining its key strengths, the Group has established a track record of award-winning projects, and delivers consistent and high returns across real estate asset classes.

Mapletree currently manages four Singapore-listed real estate investment trusts (REITs) and six private equity real estate funds, which hold a diverse portfolio of assets in Asia Pacific, Europe, the United Kingdom (UK) and the United States (US).

As at 31 March 2019, Mapletree owns and manages S$55.7 billion of office, retail, logistics, industrial, residential and lodging properties.

The Group’s assets are located across 12 markets globally, namely Singapore, Australia, China, Europe, Hong Kong SAR, India, Japan, Malaysia, South Korea, the UK, the US and Vietnam. To support its global operations, Mapletree has established an extensive network of offices in these countries.

For more information, please visit



Brief introduction of the Old St James Power Station
The old St James Power Station was erected in 1927 by the Singapore Municipal Commission and served as their first coal-fired power plant supplying electricity to nearby shipyards, industry and residences. Designed as a power plant housing equipment for the production of electric current, it was the largest, most modern, and outfitted with the most up-to-date steam powered machines of its time of construction.

It is an excellent example of British-influenced industrial building and consists of three interlinked 4-storey blocks and two 33m tall brick chimneys.  The “Boiler House” (south block) nearest to the sea, the “Turbine House” (central block) and the “Switch Gear House”, with stores and offices (north block).

The south and central blocks consist of large 4-storey high spaces required for the electric power generators, whereas the north block is fitted with regular ceiling heights and smaller spaces and has peripheral open verandas on all floors. 

The red facing brick walls give the building a distinctive image and the building is one of the largest buildings with such a façade treatment in Singapore. The red facing bricks are punctuated by large area wall openings to light up the interior spaces with cross balustrades running horizontally across the wall openings.  

The key features of St James Power Station are as follows:

External Features
Simple large span metal sheet pitch roofs
Facing brick walls and columns as external building envelope
Large area of glazed window panels on external façade
Large tall brickwork chimney

Internal features
Large internal voids
Steel truss and internal columns supporting roofs

From its completion in 1927, St James Power Station underwent several rounds renovations and expansions to accommodate the rapid growth in electrical demand, including a redesign with new gas turbine generators which was officially opened by the former Minister of Finance, Dr Goh Keng Swee in 1960.

The power station was decommissioned in 1976 and was converted into South-East Asia’s first fully automated commercial warehouse in the 1980s. The warehouse operations were discontinued in 1992 and was used intermittently for product launches and promotion events.

Together with the redevelopment of the exhibition halls of the former World Trade Centre to VivoCity, Singapore’s largest shopping mall, St James Power Station underwent a major renovation in the mid-2000s as an entertainment complex and was gazetted as a National Monument in 2009. 

The lease of St James Power Station as an entertainment complex ended in 2018 and the monument is now undergoing restoration works before starting a new chapter in its long decorated history.

Preservation Principals & Architectural intent 
Gazetted as a National Monument in 2009, the current restoration works will focus on emphasizing the architectural merits for which the building is being preserved and its importance as a representative of early British industrial style architecture. Internally, the architectural intent focuses on preserving the original spatial quality that comes with the unique building typology of a power station, while intensifying its gross floor area for modern office use. On the exterior, the focus is on creating an appropriate setting upon which the grandeur and clarity of the monument and its façade can be appreciated.

Conversion of the Monument
In the refurbishment and conversion of the monument, new floor slabs are sensitively inserted at the south and central blocks in response to the original architectural spaces and its features. Large atrium spaces are introduced at various locations in the Boiler and Turbine houses to retain the feeling of the large cavernous spaces. 

Steel roof trusses and columns were used to form the structural frame needed to support the roof cover. These will be restored and retained with new roofing sheets replacing the old. Skylights are introduced at strategic locations to allow light to stream through, including over the atrium between the Boiler and Turbine House, as well as at the jack roof over the Boiler House. The two chimney spaces are retained and repurposed as a heritage gallery on one side and a meeting room on the other.

Façade Restoration
The fair-faced brickwork of the historic façade will be carefully and meticulously restored to undo the wear and tear over the years. The large window frames around the external façade, will be restored back to steel, with profiles similar to the vintage work. The depth of the frames is enlarged to allow the introduction of double-glazed glass to achieve the performance required of an environmentally sustainable modern office. 

The Foreground
The foreground will be cleared to create a park-like setting to showcase the grand facades of the monument. A covered walkway linking the buildings and drop-off porch is carefully scaled to meet the functional requirements, while not marring the presence of the monument.