While office and business park spaces may sometimes look identical, there are actually differences between spaces approved for office use and spaces approved for business park use. Some of the differences are approved use, allowable trades as well as difference in rental rates.
Areas zoned as commercial office are usually meant for general office use while areas zoned as business park are meant for knowledge intensive as well as research & development or R & D related trades. You may also look up on the zoning for each building by referring to the master plan. Business park areas are usually zoned as business park in the master plan while office buildings are usually zoned as commercial in the master plan. These information can be found on URA Space which is on URA’s website.
For premises zoned as commercial office, any type of trade or business would be able to use the office premises regardless of the nature or type of business as long as it is for office use while business park spaces are usually meant for certain types of trades such as high-tech, high value-added, knowledge intensive and research & development (R & D) trades. You may also note that Business Parks are considered as a type of industrial property.
Office rental rates also tend to be higher as compared to business park rental rates. This may be due to the approved use of premises as not every type of businesses are able to be in business parks. Business park rental rates tend to be lower than office rental rates but business parks rental rates are usually higher than general industrial spaces such as B1 & B2 industrial spaces in Singapore.
Understanding the difference between such spaces may be important as you will be able to know which type of spaces are more suitable for your company. The suitability of spaces will also depend on the type or nature of business of your company and the number of staff or colleagues that will be occupying the space together. Opting for an open plan office concept may help your company save cost and may also be able to accommodate more people as compared to office spaces with many partition rooms.