Woodlands is one of the areas in Singapore that have been identified for renewal, as part of the country’s Remaking Our Heartland (ROH) programme. The plans comprise several major improvements to transform the town into the ‘Star Destination of the North’, in keeping with its status as the northern regional centre and gateway to Singapore.
Six ‘Star Attractions’ will be introduced in the form of new recreational and residential developments. The existing neighbourhood centres in Woodlands will also be enhanced to bring more greenery and better connectivity to the town.
1. Woodlands Regional Centre
The Woodlands Regional Centre, comprising Woodlands Central and Woodlands North Coast, is set to become an even more vibrant hub of activity, with better connectivity and new commercial and residential developments. As part of the upcoming Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL), three new MRT stations will be introduced in Woodlands by 2019 to serve residents in the town. This will be joined to the future Johor Bahru – Singapore Rapid Transit System (RTS) Link. Together with the future North-South Corridor, travel from the north to the rest of Singapore will be seamless and convenient.
In Woodlands Central, a new Town Plaza will be built next to the Woodlands MRT station, in response to residents’ suggestion for a bigger community space. This will offer a convenient and vibrant community node for Woodlands residents to come together to participate in community events.
Residents can also look forward to new housing developments in Woodlands. Within Woodlands Central, there will be a landmark residential development located near the MRT station, integrated with a vibrant Pedestrian Mall with commercial and community facilities.
In Woodlands North Coast, a new residential development will offer a ‘Housing-in-the-Woods’ experience. Drawing from its natural setting and proximity to Admiralty Park, lush landscaping will be introduced as green extensions from Admiralty Park. The project will leverage on the hilly terrain, so residents will be able to enjoy good views of the park and the Straits of Johor.
Beyond new housing developments, the Woodlands Waterfront – a popular recreation spot in the northern tip – will be transformed. A new rustic park, with trails and a nature promenade, will enable residents to enjoy abundant greenery even as they unwind by the waterfront.
2. WoodsVista Gallery
In response to residents’ suggestions for a direct connection from Woodlands Central to the Woodlands waterfront, a new scenic WoodsVista Gallery will be developed to connect the two areas. Set amidst lush greenery, the WoodsVista Gallery will be a 1.9-km-long community link with dedicated cycling and pedestrian paths. Residents will be able to walk, jog or cycle seamlessly from the Woodlands MRT station to the waterfront; or simply relax and take in scenic views of the town at strategically located rest points and activity nodes.
3. Discovery Playground
The Woodlands Town Garden located at Marsiling will be upgraded and expanded into a new Discovery Playground, where residents can enjoy the garden anew and learn about the history of the town. It will feature a new boardwalk, children’s playground, a heritage corner and a learning lane with storyboards to showcase the heritage of the town. When completed, the revamped Woodlands Town Garden will be renamed Marsiling Park, and will offer yet another recreational spot for Woodlands residents.
4. Wellness Haven
Next to the upcoming Woodlands South MRT station on the TEL, a new integrated healthcare complex will be developed. To be called the Woodlands Health Campus, it will comprise a new acute care hospital, community hospital and a long-term care facility. Designed to integrate with a new park, the healthcare complex will open in phases from 2022, bringing healthcare facilities closer to home, and providing better support for elderly residents to age in place.
5. Community Nexus
On the eastern side of Woodlands, residents can look forward to a new Community Nexus right next to the Admiralty MRT station. Located in this Community Nexus is the integrated development, Kampung Admiralty, which is expected to be completed in the third quarter this year. It will house a range of facilities such as a medical centre, eldercare and childcare centres, a hawker centre, dining and retail outlets, as well as housing for the elderly. Together with existing facilities such as Admiralty Place Neighbourhood Centre and Woodlands Galaxy Community Club, the Community Nexus will serve as a one-stop hub of facilities for all ages.
6. Social Corridor
The existing park connector that runs from the east to the west of Woodlands will be transformed into a ‘Social Corridor’, with lush greenery, community gardens and 3-Generation facilities along the park connector and MRT viaduct.
Other towns and estates in Singapore that have been identified for renewal include: Punggol, Dawson and Yishun in 2007; East Coast, Hougang and Jurong Lake in 2011; and most recently Toa Payoh and Pasir Ris, in addition to Woodlands. The renewal plans will focus on strengthening the character, community, and connectivity of each town:
• Character – The proposals will build on the unique character and distinct features of each town to strengthen its identity.
• Community – They will enhance community spaces and facilities to bring residents together through recreational and community activities.
• Connectivity – The plans will improve connectivity networks in the towns, to enhance the walking and cycling experiences for residents.
In drawing up the rejuvenation plans, the Housing and Development Board (HDB) had also actively engaged residents and stakeholders to seek their views and suggestions on the plans.