In Singapore, there are various types of factories and warehouses available for rent or sale. We sometimes see factory units with lorry or container parking directly in front of the unit when we step into an industrial building. At times, we may also see factory units that are only accessible by the passenger and cargo lifts.
So if you are wondering if there are different terms used for the various types of industrial units, read on to find out to find out more.
Types of Industrial Units
In a nutshell, most industrial buildings usually have these 3 most common types of units :
Ground floor units
Ramp up units
Flatted factory units
While there are also other types of factories available in Singapore such as terrace factories and landed factories, these are not that commonly found in Singapore.
Ground floor units are on the ground floor of the building and usually have an added advantage due to its visibility and frontage. With frontage, your potential customers can find you easily even when they are looking from outside the building or when your potential customers drive around the building. Some ground floor units may also be showroom units for certain developments.
Most of us already know what ground floor units are and the unique characteristics of these 1st storey units so let us now have a comparison of flatted factory and ramp up factory units.
Comparison Between Flatted Factory & Ramp Up Factory Units
Most high rise industrial buildings consist of flatted factory units which are usually on the second level or above depending on the configurations of the building. The best way to maximise gross floor area of the industrial building is to build more flatted factory units. This is true as flatted factory units are only accessible by the passenger and cargo lifts and not accessible by any ramp.
The specifications of ramp up units tend to be higher as compared to flatted factory units. Also, ramps and driveways tend to take up more floor area which is also why flatted factory units tend to have a more attractive rental rate as compared to ramp up factory units while ramp up units tend to command a premium due to the added convenience in terms of unit accessibility by vehicles.
Loading & Unloading
While ramp up factory units tend to command a premium over flatted factory units, the rates are justifiable due to the added convenience that a ramp up factory user enjoys. With the provision of a ramp, ramp up factory units can conveniently drive up the ramp and have easy and direct access to the unit. This also means easy loading and unloading of goods since vehicles can drive to the door step of the unit. For businesses with frequent vehicle movement such as distributors, delivery companies and logistics firms, ramp up units are recommended to maximise the efficiency of the operations as time is precious.
More often than not, the ceiling height of ramp up factory units tend to be higher than flatted factory units. This can be because vehicles driving up the ramp tend to require a certain height clearance in order to be able to drive up the ramp and directly to the unit comfortably. For flatted factory units, since there is no direct vehicle access, ceiling height are usually slightly lower than ramp up factory units. Industrial users whether flatted factory or ramp up factory units also tend to maximise the ceiling height available to them by installing racking systems.
If you look closely at the building plan the next time you step into the lift lobby of the building, you may sometimes see that the floor loading is clearly stated close to the lift area. The floor loading is usually in Kilonewton per square metre. This figures tell you how much weight or load the floor is able to withstand. For ramp up units, the floor loading tend to be higher than flatted factory units. This could be to cater for the vehicles with goods driving up the ramp and directly to the ramp up units. As for flatted factory units, the floor loading is usually lower. This could be because there is no vehicle movement and access and so a lower floor loading would be sufficient.
Which Type of Factory is More Suitable
While flatted and ramp up factory have their differences, it does not mean that one is better than the other as it really depends on your nature of business and operational requirements. For example a e-business or media company is unlikely to require a ramp up factory unit due to the nature of business and so it will not make sense to pay more even though the specifications may be slightly better as compared to the flatted factory units. You should also note that there are different specifications for ramp up units such as 20 or 40 footer ramp up and this would depend on the turning radius of the ramp and design of the building. There is also a difference between 20 footer rigid frame and 20 footer container.