Singaporeans staying in the South can look forward to a new park opening next year. Pasir Panjang Park will open in phases with the section from Pasir Panjang MRT to Jalan Pelepah neighbourhood being the first. While this park will feature no dinosaurs, this will be the first park in Singapore to be designed and built together with the community, for the community. When completed, it will stretch from West Coast Park to Labrador Nature Reserve.
The community, which includes residents and interest groups as well as corporations and businesses, all agreed that Pasir Panjang’s rich history needed to be showcased in the park. To achieve this, there will be artefacts, including items donated by the Port of Singapore Authority (PSA) as well as self-guided tours.
Old photos of Pasir Panjang contributed by the community will also be featured.
As a nod to Pasir Panjang’s namesake, which means long sand, the park will integrate plots of sand nestled in coastal vegetation. This means some of the old coastline will be recreated, which is sure to reignite feelings of nostalgia for those who remember Pasir Panjang in the 1970s. Even the old concrete railing that used to run along the coastline is going to be rebuilt.
With 6 terminals in Pasir Panjang, PSA is one of the big players in the area. As a community stakeholder, they will pump $3.5 million dollars into the building of Pasir Panjang Park, through their Garden City Fund.
Pasir Panjang Park is only the first of more than 50 parks to be included in this citizen park programme. Soon, NParks could come to the park at your doorstep and ask you how the community could play a bigger part in the park. According to NParks, this is so Singaporeans can have “a stake in shaping their home”, by being the co-creators of the parks in their community.
For parks that are yet to be, NParks plans to involve the community from the start. This means people and companies nearby will be sit in and take part from the design phase to the construction. But it doesn’t end there! The community will also help to manage the park after its completion.
Sounds exciting? Does this make you wonder what parks will be like in Singapore’s not-too-distant future? I, for one, hope this means we get parks we feel like we are park of. Which means cleaner parks, more recreational gardens by the older folk who still miss the kampongs and more green lungs for the city. What about you?