Yishun Gets 20% Of Votes For Least Desirable Neighbourhood
Singaporeans are known to be strong supporters of the areas they live in — we constantly hear claims of “East Side Best Side” or “West Is The Best”.
That brings rise to another discussion, which side is the worst side? Well, according to a poll done via Answers.sg, there’s one neighbourhood that does stand out — Yishun.
But those who live in this neighbourhood must have something to say to defend their hometown, since over 220,000 people live there according to 99.co.
Singaporeans vote Yishun for least desirable neighbourhood
Answers.sg polled Singaporeans about the least desirable place to live, to which 6,733 people responded with their choice.
Out of the 11 options listed, Yishun came out tops at 20% — ahead of Pioneer which raked in 15% of the votes.
A total of over 1,300 respondents voted Yishun as the neighbourhood they wouldn’t want to live in.
Meanwhile, places like Pasir Ris and Sengkang had the lowest votes at 4%.
Compared to the thousands who voted for Yishun and Pioneer, only slightly over 500 people voted for both Pasir Ris and Sengkang combined.
What’s interesting to note is that the two least desirable places to live — Yishun and Pioneer — are located in the North and West respectively.
On the other hand, Pasir Ris and Sengkang occupy the Eastern and North Eastern parts of Singapore.
Why does Yishun have a bad reputation?
These numbers make one wonder — why is Yishun getting all this hate?
Well, there are several reasons why Yishun might be considered the least desirable place to live in. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll be familiar with the shocking reports that pop up about Yishun.
In 2016, for example, The Straits Times (ST) reported 21 dead cats in Yishun since Sep 2015.
Apart from animal abuse and fatalities, Yishun has also been a hotspot for drug busts in recent years.
The Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) just raided a residential unit in Yishun Avenue 6 in July this year — where officers seized “ice” and ketamine, among other drugs.
In 2017, TODAY reported a drug bust at an industrial building in Yishun involving 970 grams of heroin and over S$8,000 cash.
That said, these are but a few of the examples.
Over the years, Yishun has become the “Florida” of Singapore — if you’re not familiar, a lot of crazy stories always revolve around Florida to the point it’s become a meme.
This is probably why people tend to take shots at Yishun as well.
However, these stand-out stories might have overshadowed what Yishun is as an actual place in recent times.
Yishun residents weigh in
It’s best to hear about Yishun from people who would know it the best — the residents themselves. After all, it can’t be that bad if over 220,000 are still staying there.
Yishunites on Reddit have shared that it is in fact a rather safe place to stay.
In fact, some have given it the title of a “sleepy neighbourhood” where nothing much happens.
However, others have comically agreed that it is a dangerous neighbourhood so housing prices remain low.
Whether or not the prices are kept low due to its reputation, it’s hard to argue that it does have reasonable pricing for housing.
The prices of Housing Development Board (HDB) flats in Yishun are comparatively better than in areas like Sengkang.
Based on HDB’s data, the median price for 4-room resale flat in Yishun was going for about S$500,000 in the third quarter of 2023 — compared to the S$558,000 of Sengkang.
What makes a good neighbourhood in Singapore
As someone who lives along the North-East line, I can’t say I have much interaction with the North-South side of things.
But from the little experience I do have travelling to the North, I can say one thing: it feels like an incredibly long journey between each MRT station.
Maybe it’s also because it’s Singapore’s oldest MRT line that it looks a bit more dated compared to newer lines.
Apart from public transport, there are plenty of factors that come to mind when deciding if a neighbourhood is considered desirable.
Amongst the more common criteria include housing, amenities, entertainment, and the residents — and maybe for the newer generation of residents, it could just be about the vibes.
Pasir Ris, for example, might fare better for being close to Singapore’s coast. Those who enjoy relaxing to the sound of waves, and cycling by the beach can do so at Pasir Ris Park.
There are also a lot more niche factors to consider that make a difference but could be overlooked. For example, does it have a 24-hour McDonald’s outlet or a 24-hour NTUC Fairprice?
These are some of the things that personally make or break a neighbourhood for me.
Some of these criteria are definitely subjective, so maybe a neighbourhood that’s voted to be liveable might not be the place for you.
It’s always best to take a trip down and check it out for yourself if you’re planning on moving.
Be proud of your neighbourhood, regardless of what people think
Whether your neighbourhood is a 20% -er or a 4 %-er, it doesn’t really matter if you enjoy staying there.
Be it for the amenities, the people or just the vibes, picking the right neighbourhood for yourself is the most important thing.
It all comes down to where you want to come back to after a long day.
Note: The views expressed within this article are the author’s own.
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Featured image adapted from Frasers Property for illustration purposes only.
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