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URA announces plans to rejuvenate Kallang River areas

Wednesday, March 29, 2017 - 11:12

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URA announces plans to rejuvenate Kallang River areas, and wants feedback from the public and private sector on how the 10-kilometre stretch can be transformed.

THE Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) is looking to revitalise areas along Kallang River, and wants feedback from the public and private sector on how the 10-kilometre stretch can be transformed.

URA's own proposals, which focus on adding new waterfront housing, renewing old industrial estates, providing seamless connectivity from Bishan to the city centre and developing the Kallang Basin as a sports and recreational venue, are displayed in an exhibition at the URA Centre Atrium that will last till May 2.

In his opening speech at the launch of the exhibition on Wednesday, National Development Minister Lawrence Wong said that there has been a change of thinking on the urban landscape and cities are beginning to appreciate the emotional link with nature as well as the need for nature to soften the harshness of the modern metropolis.

He added that this is just the first of a series of exhibitions that URA will be organising, as Singapore also has major plans to develop new areas such as the Jurong Lake District, Punggol, Woodlands, as well as the Rail Corridor.

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URA said: "Many of the ideas exhibited at this stage are conceptual and aspirational in nature, and not developed in great detail. The intention is to invite public feedback, so that they can be developed further."

The government outlined five broad key ideas. Firstly, it said that there is potential to inject another 100,000 dwelling units in the area in the next two decades, in addition to the current approximately 800,000 residents, or 200,000 homes, that are within two kilometres of Kallang River.

Some of these could be waterfront housing developments. Most of them will likely be located in Kampong Bugis. Old industrial estates such as Kallang Distripark and Kallang Industrial Estate also have the potential to be renewed into mixed-use precincts with new industrial developments.

Secondly, it is also planning to improve accessibility by providing an uninterrupted route along the river for pedestrians, joggers and cyclists, as the river is currently divided into separate stretches, with parts of the river cut off from access by major roads or expressways as well as industrial estates.

Thirdly, URA plans to enhance Kallang Basin as a sports and recreational venue, developing the area around the Sports Hub into an inclusive sports and recreational venue catering to people of different interests, ages, and abilities. Facilities planned include running trails, a new football hub, and free-to-play courts.

The last two suggestions focus on enhancing the biodiversity of Kallang River and incorporating the river's rich heritage into its development plans.

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