URA will keep Singapore green

Letter from Fun Siew Leng Group Director (Urban Planning & Design), Urban Redevelopment Authority
Today Online 30 Sep 11;

WE THANK Mr Richard Hartung for sharing his thoughts in his commentary "Our CBD is losing its green edge" (Sept 23).

We fully agree that Singapore should continue to build upon its strong reputation as a City in a Garden by providing more lush greenery, parks, open spaces and park connectors within the urban environment.

The 100-hectare Gardens by the Bay and The Lawn @ Marina Bay located between The Sail and Marina Bay Financial Centre are examples of our commitment to plan and provide more greenery and recreational spaces within the city.

There are other parks such as Pearl's Hill City Park, Ann Siang Hill Park and Hong Lim Park that will continue to serve as green lungs in the city.

Even as the city grows, we want to preserve the sense of greenery. Land that is sold for new developments will have to retain or set aside space for greenery/open areas.

For the upcoming Peck Seah Street/Choon Guan Street development, the developer is required to upgrade Tanjong Pagar Park and build a public space of at least 1,000 sq m on the ground floor of the new development.

Under the Landscape Replacement Policy, all new developments within the Downtown Core (including the Central Business District and Marina Bay), Jurong Gateway and Kallang Riverside will have green landscape areas equivalent to the development site area.

These could be roof gardens, sky terraces, first-storey communal landscape areas and communal planters.

The land parcel at Robinson Road/Cecil Street was zoned for commercial use since Master Plan 1998 but has been used as a green space in the interim.

With the Landscape Replacement Policy, we are able to cater to demand for office space while ensuring that affected green spaces are replaced.

Over the next 10 to 15 years, we can expect to see more greenery in Singapore, as we plan to increase the amount of green space from the current 3,600 hectares to 4,200 hectares, as set out in Master Plan 2008.

We assure Mr Hartung and all residents that we will continue to set aside land for quality recreational and green open spaces.