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Ahmoi with Matador
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21 May 2008

URA launches new Island-wide Leisure Plan

As part of the Draft Master Plan 2008 Review, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) today announced a new island-wide Leisure Plan that showcases a diverse range of leisure opportunities for all to enjoy, from vibrant and exciting activities to the quiet retreats.

The new island-wide Leisure Plan was unveiled by Mr Mah Bow Tan, Minister for National Development, at the Singapore Institute of Architects 47th annual dinner today at the Suntec Convention Centre Ballroom to 1,000 architects and industry players.

The two key foci for URA's Draft Master Plan 2008 are to sustain economic growth and enhance the quality of living environment for Singapore. The ideas and opportunities in the new plan show how we can further enhance our living environment by making the most of our assets, capitalising on our unique identity and heightening the sense of greenery. The Leisure Plan builds upon the previous Parks & Waterbodies and Identity Plans developed by URA in 2003. Since then, many of the proposals in these plans have been implemented.

This is the first time that an island-wide plan has been drawn up to showcase greater variety and quality of recreational choices round-the-clock, island-wide, for people of all ages. Besides new green spaces, the Leisure Plan presents a whole host of other recreational options, from more upcoming water activities in selected rivers and reservoirs across the island, new sporting facilities close to homes, to lifestyle hotspots and many things to do in the city.

Key highlights of Leisure Plan

The key highlights of the Leisure Plan are as follows:

a) Enhance Singapore’s lush green experience by:

- tripling the existing park connector network from 100 km today to 360 km;

- developing a first-ever 150-km round-island route for people to stroll, jog or cycle around the entire country;

- expanding the park connector network with seven loops and five links; and

- increasing Singapore’s green spaces by adding more park spaces from about 3,300 hectares today to 4,200 hectares; more parks will offer a greater variety of experiences for all.

b) Create leisure destinations with unique offerings for Singaporeans and tourists with enhancements:

- The Kranji & Lim Chu Kang area is the newest leisure destination identified. It offers the potential of becoming a unique countryside destination close to nature. There will be new park lands and agri-tainment attractions, enhancements to existing attractions, for example, Sungei Buloh and Kranji Reservoir, and greater access to the nature areas, the waterfront and the farms.

- The five other destinations previously identified are Jurong Lake District, Mandai, Changi Point, Southern Ridges & Waterfront and the City Centre & Marina Bay.

c) Encourage greater buzz and nightlife in the city:

- More programmes will be developed to encourage greater buzz and nightlife in the city, especially in Orchard Road, Singapore River, Bras Basah.Bugis and Marina Bay.

- There will be night festivals coming up like the Singapore River Festival organised by the Singapore Tourism Board, starting in September this year. The National Heritage Board is also developing a Night Festival in the Bras Basah and Stamford Road area over two weekends in July. There will be a weekend street theatre, live music, dance performances and interactive programmes. This will position the precinct as a venue for large-scale night events and create synergy between existing developments such as the Stamford Green, National Museum and SMU.

- Such events and more coordinated marketing efforts will better position these key areas within the city and create compelling destinations, greater buzz and nightlife for the city.

“This is the first time that URA is coming up with an island-wide Leisure Plan that offers a wide range of leisure opportunities for all. We want to ensure that even as we continue to grow, we can still enjoy a very good quality of life. In drawing up the plan, the planners have combed through the whole island looking for leisure potential and opportunities for young and old, capitalising on our green assets and waterbodies. The Plan will provide for both active and passive recreation. We have also come up with new ideas on how to create a 24/7 city. It is not just about providing space and facilities to play, it is also enhancing the variety and quality of leisure options we have round-the-clock, where there is something for everyone.” said Mrs Cheong Koon Hean, URA’s Chief Executive Officer.

Refer to Annex A for the island-wide Leisure Plan.

Enhancing Singapore’s lush greenery

Building upon the Parks & Waterbodies Plan developed in 2003 and taking the City in a Garden vision further, the Leisure Plan aims to heighten our lush green experience by increasing park spaces, tripling the park connector network and creating a first-ever round-island route.

Tripling the park connector network

The existing park connector network will be tripled from 100 km today to 360 km progressively over the next 10 to 15 years.

Park connectors are creative ways of making use of our land. These are linkages created alongside canals and roads running through towns, to improve accessibility between parks. Park connectors make it possible for people to stroll, jog or cycle from park to park and coast to coast, bringing parks closer to homes.

Creating first-ever round-island route

Imagine jogging or cycling around the entire island – this could be possible in future, over the next 10 to 15 years with an extensive and continuous 150km route that URA planners have envisioned around the island. This is 3.5 times the length of the Pan-Island Expressway.

The round-island route consists of linking up park connectors, pathways, crossings, coastal promenades, trails and other connections to bring people closer to the coastline and greenery, providing greater recreational options closer to homes.

Part of the round-island route has recently been completed, for example, from East Coast Park to Changi Point and the route at Southern Ridges. Substantial stretches of the route amounting to at least half of the route is expected to be completed in the next five years, including the stretch at Punggol Coastal Promenade.

The route offers a diversity of experiences through Singapore’s many natural gems, from nature retreats, to breathtaking waterfront views, beautiful beaches and attractive parks. For instance, Singaporeans can spend a morning with their family at East Coast Park, enjoy the sea breeze at the new coastal promenades at Punggol and Woodlands, or take an evening stroll through our hilltops at the Southern Ridges.

The more adventurous can set off on a weekend expedition to the many corners of Singapore, such as cycling around the rustic Changi Point or go on a nature trek through the mangrove forests and farmland at Kranji & Lim Chu Kang. And when the sun sets, they can pitch their tents at campsites by the beach or at the waterfront parks along the way.

Refer to Annex B for the plan showing the round-island route.

Expanding the park connector network with seven loops, five links

In the next five years, park connectors will be linked up to create an even more extensive web of connector network with seven loops and five links of park connectors. Today, you can jog or cycle along the 42km Eastern Coastal Park Connector Network that runs from Pasir Ris Park, through Pasir Ris, Tampines and Bedok towns, to East Coast Park and back.

In the next five years, another six loops will be completed. These are:

a) Northern Region Loop
b) North Eastern Region Loop
c) Kallang-Serangoon Loop
d) Siglap-Kallang Loop
e) Southern Ridges Loop
f) Western Region Loop

Adding more park spaces

To further enhance Singapore’s lush greenery, the amount of park space will be increased by about 900 ha, from 3,300 ha today to 4,200 ha, equivalent to about 15 Bishan Parks.

Some of the parks planned in the 2003 Parks & Waterbodies Plan are already being realised. These include the Sengkang Riverside Park, Bukit Timah Nature Reserve extension at Dairy Farm, Admiralty Park and one-north Park.

The major new upcoming parks are the Gardens by the Bay, Punggol Town Park, linear parks along Tampines Avenue 12, Woodlands waterfront, Sungei Loyang, Rifle Range Interim Green, and the Rowers’ and Family Bays at Lower Seletar Reservoir. A number of smaller neighbourhood parks such as at Choa Chu Kang Dr, Chiltern Dr, Petir Road, and Whampoa estate that are closer to residential areas have also been planned.

Creating distinctive destinations with unique offerings

Kranji & Lim Chu Kang – A nature sanctuary and our very own countryside

Located at the northwest corner of Singapore, the Kranji & Lim Chu Kang area is traditionally known for its farms and the tranquil Kranji Reservoir. Being far from the hustle and bustle of the city and with its small, winding roads, Kranji & Lim Chu Kang exude a laid-back countryside atmosphere that is unlike any other areas in Singapore.

The 1,400 hectare Kranji & Lim Chu Kang area is the latest in six destinations identified with distinctive character and assets that can be capitalised on and enhanced to offer a unique experience for Singaporeans and tourists. Kranji & Lim Chu Kang is envisioned to be an attractive, charming, “countryside” destination close to nature.

Today, the area is anchored by the 130-hectare Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, the 2km-long Kranji Nature Trail and the beautiful Kranji Reservoir. The 115 farms in the vicinity also offer unique rural experiences for those seeking the kampong lifestyle. Many farms are open to the public and have put in place small-scale cafes, visitor centres and farm produce outlets.

In the next few years, the public can look forward to:

a) Two sites totaling 21 ha to be set aside as new park land to serve as ecological green buffers, while allowing educational programming activities to take place away from the more sensitive parts of the wetlands.

b) Improved visitor centre facilities and more “bio-learning” activities. These park enhancements will be guided by a new wetlands master plan to be drawn up for the larger Sungei Buloh area. These efforts will strengthen Sungei Buloh’s position as a thriving wetland of international standing.

c) New trails through the previously inaccessible 17 hectare Kranji Marshes, offering a rare opportunity to come close to the unique freshwater marshland at Kranji.

d) New trails with look-out points and pavilions along the banks of Kranji Reservoir will bring visitors all the way to the water’s edge and provide beautiful views of the reservoir.

e) Non-motorised boating activities, for example, kayaking, within Kranji Reservoir will be introduced. Visitors will be able to explore the lush marshland and rich birdlife at Kranji in an environmentally-friendly and non-intrusive manner.

f) Three agri-tainment sites will be coming up at Lim Chu Kang. They will provide new recreational experiences, for example, farm-stays, invigorating spa treatments, strolls through lush plantations and hands-on farming activities, in an attractive countryside setting.

g) New park connectors will weave through the farmland and reach the parks and waterfront. This will improve access to the various attractions at Kranji & Lim Chu Kang and provide a seamless outdoor experience for visitors to the area.

These initiatives will create a crescent of nature-based activities, from mangroves to marshes, with a spot of fun in the farms, which the public can enjoy. They will bring Singaporeans’ closer to our nature areas and waterways, while retaining the rustic countryside appeal of Kranji & Lim Chu Kang.

Refer to Annex C for the site plan of Kranji & Lim Chu Kang showing the key proposals.

The five other destinations previously identified are Jurong Lake District, Mandai, Changi Point, Southern Ridges & Waterfront and the City Centre & Marina Bay.

About the Draft Master Plan 2008

The Leisure Plan is part of URA’s Draft Master Plan 2008. It includes feedback from prior consultation done by URA with key stakeholders, community leaders and interest groups.

The public and community can give their feedback on the draft plans during the Draft Master Plan 2008 exhibition which will be fully unveiled on 23 May 2008.

The Master Plan is the statutory land use plan that URA develops to guide Singapore’s development over the next 10 to 15 years. It is reviewed every five years, and translates the broad long-term strategies as set out in the Concept Plan into detailed plans for implementation. The last review was done in 2003.

The Draft Master Plan 2008 will continue to focus on providing Singaporeans with a good quality of life with more recreational choices and better living environments.



By Spirit
25,912 Posts
27 June 2008

URA unveils plans to enhance pedestrian experience at Upper Serangoon

The Urban Redevelopment Authority today unveiled the design proposals to enhance the pedestrian experience at Upper Serangoon. The project titled “Colours of History. Trails of Memories” is part of URA’s plans to enhance the quality of our living environment and to strengthen the identity of places where people endear themselves to.

Enhancing the pedestrian experience

Residents of Upper Serangoon and those living in nearby residential estates can look forward to an enhanced pedestrian experience along a 1.2 km stretch at Upper Serangoon Road, from Yio Chu Kang Road to Simon Road.

Traditionally known by residents in the area as the “6th Milestone”, the Upper Serangoon area is a special part of the Singapore heartlands, with a colourful history of popular eateries, street festivals and Chinese medicine men in a village setting. The sidewalk along Upper Serangoon Road today serves as an important link for commuters and local residents between Kovan MRT station and a neighbourhood commercial node at Yio Chu Kang Road and Upper Serangoon Road.

URA recognises the rich multi-cultural identity of the area and aims to enhance the pedestrian environment along Upper Serangoon Road. The project will include the provision of continuous walkways with better landscaping to add visual interest to the walking experience. In collaboration with Aljunied GRC, the walkways will also serve as a trail of memories. Storyboards and sculptures, sponsored by the community, will be installed along the walkway to depict the rich and colourful history of the area.

Residential areas along the Kampong Sireh canal will be linked up to Upper Serangoon Road and to the future park connector along Jalan Pelikat. Pedestrian walkways, new crossings and better landscaping along the Kampong Sireh canal will be put in place to improve connectivity.

Realising Plans in Partnership with the Community

The enhancement of the pedestrian connections at Upper Serangoon is one of the areas earmarked for environmental improvement projects as part of the Parks and Waterbodies and Identity Plans exhibited by URA in 2002. The Parks and Waterbodies and Identity Plans seek to expand Singapore’s green spaces and waterbodies as well as retain and enhance the identity and character of places.

URA’s CEO, Mrs Cheong Koon Hean, said: “The enhanced landscaped pedestrian walkways will improve accessibility and connectivity of the area. But more importantly, I am delighted that URA has the opportunity to collaborate with Aljunied Town Council to enhance the physical environment and and strengthen the rich multi-cultural identity of Upper Serangoon as well as promote awareness of the community’s history.”

Members of Parliament for the Aljunied GRC welcome the plans to improve the pedestrian experience along Upper Serangoon Road. “"We are pleased to have URA's support to beautify and improve this stretch of Upper Serangoon, which holds a special place in the hearts of our residents and many others in Aljunied GRC. It will also add colour to our 6th milestone which will become an icon that will be remembered for generations to come," said Mdm Cynthia Phua, MP for Aljunied GRC.

Mr George Yeo, Minister for Foreign Affairs and MP for Aljunied GRC, will officiate the launch of the “Upper Serangoon Heritage Trail and Exhibition” at Heartland Mall on Friday, 27 June 2008. The design proposals for Upper Serangoon will be exhibited from 27 June to 29 June 2008. The exhibition will then move to Hougang Hub from 4 July to 6 July 2008 and subsequently to the various Community Centres in Aljunied GRC. Members of the public, including the residents, are welcome to give their feedback on the proposals.

Design-Environment Group, Architects has been appointed to design the pedestrian walkways. Construction will begin in the second half of this year and will be completed in 2010.
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