Chang architects

©Chang Architects



Born and raised in Singapore, Yong Ter’s passion for architecture was discovered during his university years at the School of Architecture, National University of Singapore. Upon graduation, he sought apprenticeship with Mr. Tang Guan Bee for several years, before starting his practice, CHANG Architects, at the turn of this millennium.

This is a Singapore-based practice that seeks out new meanings in the most seemingly mundane briefs, offering fresh interpretations of architectural spaces that meet the occupants’ needs, add values and enhance living, while co-existing harmoniously with nature and the environment.

The firm believes that great design is a work from the mind, and the heart. The goal is to create innovative and engaging designs that uplift human spirits, evolving unique characteristics of each project. While rationality and logic could fulfill functional briefs and achieve pragmatic efficiencies, an intuitive, poetic approach could resonate with the soul, and transcend limitations of rationalities. Therefore, part of the design process also includes unlearning and forgetting, and self-discoveries of the basics/origin.  

There are many inspiring landscape works, to single-out a landscape architect that inspires most would be a challenge.

Mount Faber at the southern tip of Singapore. This is a small hill with pockets of manicured parks as well as secondary rainforest. This is where my life revolves – having stayed near it for decades, and my office is right at the foot of it, totally immersed in nature. It is also my first dating venue!


Cornwall Gardens

This house is intended for multi-generation living. The client wanted an ‘open home, a cool tropical paradise for the family’, encouraging their children to ‘raise their families here when they grow up’. Designed with an I-Thou relationship with nature, the family and nature share the same breathing space. Plants, water bodies, and living spaces are integrated as one. The setting provides daylighting, natural ventilation, and passive cooling. It offers an ecological-friendly environment that promotes general wellness for all. At the foyer, an old retaining wall with a history of leakage has been transformed into a green courtyard with waterfall feature. Visitors are now greeted with tropical rainforest plants and the sounds of cascading water, which can be enjoyed from all levels. Working with the existing terrain, built-ups that contributed to the site coverage are utilised as planters for tropical fruit trees, to cool ambient temperature, and to insulate the interiors. On plan, the house is a green oasis amongst the neighbourhood, of landscape decks and cascading planters framing the bio pool and ponds. These are the catchment areas for rainwater harvesting, to be recycled for irrigation. Planting verandahs of varying plant species line the peripheries of the rooms and overlook the central pool. This continues to form a planter bridge of passion fruits, where climbing vines provide sun-shade from the setting sun, and a privacy screen for the neighbours. This house has become the popular gathering place for the extended families and friends, and it has also attracted a host of biodiversity – from bees, butterflies to squirrels. By living with and constantly in touch with nature, this house offers fresh definitions for contemporary tropical living.
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