If you want to change the use of a property (e.g. from a shop to a restaurant, or from a restaurant to a pub), you may need to apply for planning permission for Change of Use from URA. Before signing a tenancy or purchase agreement of the property, you should check if your intended use for that property can be allowed, and obtain Change of Use Approval if it is required.
Singapore River Precinct is dominated by a significant amount of shop houses. URA has also designated Boat Quay for conservation. For conservation areas, any change of use, revamps, restoration etc. will have to be approved by URA conservation unit.