Singapore in next 50 years: recreational spots on Southern Islands among URA’s plans
Singapore in next 50 years: recreational spots on Southern Islands among URA’s plans. People in Singapore could live in “open-plan” flats, walk to the nearest business district for work, and spend their weekends exploring one of the island’s five “identity corridors” in a few decades.
These are some of the concepts showcased by the Urban Redevelopment Authority in a public exhibition that opened on Monday (June 6) and showcases planning concepts and proposals to guide Singapore’s development over the next 50 years. The exhibition, titled Space for Our Dreams, is open to the public and covers various aspects of Singapore’s urban environment.
Images of future homes, new spaces outside the Central Business District that could be turned into commercial “polycentres,” and swaths of green that will be preserved as ecological corridors are among the ideas.
FLEXIBLE HOMES, INCLUSIVE HOUSING
One strategy that URA is implementing is to plan for a broader range of housing designs to accommodate households of various sizes and needs.
They would include homes with more open floor plans, allowing owners to configure the spaces to their changing needs and lifestyle.
The URA is also working to make housing areas more inclusive and connected.
“For example, the future residential estate at Bayshore will include a mix of public and private housing, as well as amenities and recreational opportunities for the community to enjoy,” the authority said.
Aside from these, it is considering incorporating more walkable streets and community spaces, such as by designing schools to allow for the sharing of more facilities with the community and to foster better community relationships.
URA will revitalize old towns while setting aside reserve sites and adaptable “time-shared” spaces that accommodate different uses at different times of the day to make towns more adaptable and future-proof.
A co-working space that also serves as a community events venue in the evenings is an example.
MORE FLEXIBLE ARRANGEMENT, CLOSER TO HOME
To bring jobs closer to home, the URA will continue to build islandwide “polycentres,” or business nodes outside the city center.
Industrial estates that integrate different uses in a single development in a “vertical zoning” concept could also be seen in polycentres and city centers.
“Clean industrial activities can occupy the lower floors, and co-working spaces can occupy the mid-floors, creating a buffer for residences on the upper floors,” according to the URA.
Key polycentres will also be strategically placed to form “synergistic ecosystems” and efficiently tap nearby transportation links, according to the urban planner.
The Jurong Lake District, for example, will be close to the Tuas Port and research and development nodes in the western region, while the Northern Gateway — home to new innovative sectors such as agriculture technology and cybersecurity — will have improved connectivity to Johor Bahru in Malaysia via the Woodlands North Rapid Transit System link.
Considering the potential long-term impact of flexible work arrangements on office space demand, URA intends to introduce selected commercial and office sites with shorter lease tenures.
“The goal is to help businesses adapt more quickly to changing needs and to refresh our land uses more quickly.”
CLEANER TRAVEL, MORE VIBRANT NEIGHBOURHOODS
URA will prioritize more road space for public buses and expand the cycling network in order to promote more sustainable modes of transportation.
In light of the rising demand for e-commerce, the authority also intends to make logistics operations more efficient, such as by piloting courier hubs — where goods vehicles will stop at car parks to unload parcels, which will then be delivered to nearby houses by parcel walkers.
Separately, as the URA looks to expand the Dual-Use Scheme, which allows the public to use school facilities, the public may see more community and leisure activities being held at schools.
It also intends to provide more recreational options outside of housing estates.
“In response to Singaporeans’ feedback, we will investigate further unlocking the Southern Islands as our very own tropical island destination in the long term,” the authority added.
“As a starting point, parts of the Southern Islands could be activated to test new recreation and tourism concepts such as nature and heritage learning journeys, as well as low-impact eco-accommodations and leisure activities.”
SHAPING IDENTITY, PRESERVING HERITAGE
To create a “endearing and lovable” home for future generations, the URA is also focusing on Singapore’s heritage and sites in order to foster a greater appreciation and sense of ownership for such spaces.
A Heritage and Identity Structure Plan was created, which detailed assets ranging from monuments to heartland heritage areas.
“The plan will guide our long-term efforts to protect, enhance, and integrate built heritage into urban development in a sensitive manner.”
A key component of the authority’s strategy is a new concept known as “identity corridors,” which are five distinct stretches of land around the island, each defined by characteristics such as unique streetscapes and experiences that resonate with Singaporeans.
Historic East, Thomson-Kallang Corridor, Inner Ring, Rail Corridor, and Southern Ridges and the Coast are the five corridors.
Historic East: A new festive plaza near Geylang Serai and possibly upgraded cycling and walking paths will be added to the corridor of cycling streets that stretches all the way to the East Coast.
Thomson-Kallang Corridor: Public spaces will be co-created with the community, and the Kallang River will be improved in terms of accessibility and landscaping.
More walking and cycling spaces could be introduced along Zion – Kim Seng – Scotts – Newton – Moulmein – Balestier – Lavender – Crawford Roads to encourage exploration of different neighbourhoods.
Rail Corridor: The public is invited to co-create activity spaces along the corridor, which will be added to ongoing work to improve accessibility and greenery.
Southern Ridges and the Coast: Contributions are welcome to help shape the 10-kilometer promenade into a distinct public space that connects the Greater Southern Waterfront to its surroundings.
Aside from these plans, the exhibition Space for Our Dreams will also feature the authority’s environmental stewardship and sustainability plans, as well as concept proposals for the Paya Lebar Air Base site, which will be decommissioned in the 2030s.
The exhibition is open to the public from Monday to Saturday at The URA Centre on Maxwell Road, or they can view it online and provide feedback at go.gov.sg/ltprexhibit.
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Source: https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/singapore-next-50-Singapore in next 50 yearsyears-ura-1915986.
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