Yeo Kaye Wee
Live With It! A New Prototype for Living with our Waste

Thesis supervisor: Dr Swinal Samant

Site: Tengah, Singapore

The thesis project began with a question: Where exactly does our waste go once we throw them down the chutes or into bins?


Singapore's waste problem is a mounting one; our only landfill is filling up quickly, and our exported waste is causing severe damage to health and lives overseas. These are results of a problem with invisibility: our waste processes are often out of sight, out of mind.

As such, the thesis sought to bring waste to the forefront of daily lives, for it to be perceived as a resource rather than nuisance, and for us to live with our waste, by embracing its potentials and possibilities.


A multi-scalar prototype was proposed in the new town of Tengah, to demonstrate the various levels of intervention required to completely renew and refresh our existing waste management system. The goal is to envision a future in which the resources extracted from our waste is maximised and used to incentivise this new form of living.

Precinct of Resources

New hands-on waste management activities for residents integrated into precinct amenities and functions.

A Quick Brown Fox Jumped Over A Lazy Dog
Tengah as Prototype Town for Resource Circulation

Tengah was chosen as the site for the prototype proposal due to its location among future smart manufacturing districts, educational institution as well as existing housing neighbourhoods. This allows for potential synergisation of programmes related to resource-circulation and

extraction from waste. A series of layers were created to support the various systems required for the proposal. The residential developments and centres will be supported by a series of mobility networks, blue and green networks, as well as a logistics and resource conveyance system underground.

Functions & Amenities

Precinct connected to larger town by sky corridor

Identifying nodes

Residential cores designed around community spaces & waste management

Stitching the Urban Fabric

Continuous vertical connections for community activities and encounters

Identifying nodes

Modular housing units arranged around community and shared spaces

Block to Precinct Level

Seamless connection to precinct functions and larger town

Sub-Community Level

Sub-Communities as hubs of activities and sharing

Unit Level 

Shared common spaces arranged around waste management

Landscaped Roof Level

Urban green spaces with community farming elements

A Precinct of Visible, Shared & Rewarding Processes

The precinct thus comes together to form an environment in which there are visible infrastructure and processes, shared spaces and activities, as well as an underlying system of jobs and economies. These seek to make the decentralisation and insertion of waste management processes

into daily life rewarding and thus incentivises a shift in perception and treatment of our waste. This creates a new way of life in terms of dealing with our waste, where we quite literally, live with it!