SINGAPORE: The new Jurong Lake Gardens will be home to the largest collection of water lilies in Singapore, with more than 140 varieties, announced the National Parks Board (NParks) on Saturday (Mar 24).
More than 100 varieties of water lilies will be new to Singapore, such as the Australian Giant Water Lily and the Foxfire Water Lily, added NParks.
Visitors will be able to see the aquatic plants up close from boardwalks which will extend across the terrace ponds.
These are part of the concept design for the gardens' east and central zones which was unveiled on Saturday.
Touted as the next national gardens in the heartlands, the Jurong Lake Gardens is part of a larger transformation of the Jurong Lake District.
There are three parts to the gardens - west, east and central - and proposed plans for the latter two zones had been put up for public consultation from November 2016 to April 2017.
More than 14,000 suggestions were received, said NParks on Saturday.
Sharing some of the feedback, NParks said many people noted that the buildings and features in the Chinese and Japanese Gardens - in the central zone - held special memories for Singaporeans.
"The design for Jurong Lake Gardens Central hence seeks to retain the natural ambience and key features of the gardens by working with the existing landforms and key buildings and features, and leveraging on the water surrounding the gardens," said NParks.
The iconic seven-storey pagoda at the Chinese Garden, for example, will be retained.
One new feature will be a water gallery trail where boats can travel along the banks of the lake surrounded by a swamp forest.
As public feedback showed that people wanted more public spaces for activities, the northern shore of the gardens will be transformed into a space comprising a lawn, a pavilion housing food and beverage outlets and a youth park.
To make the area more accessible, an East-West cycling route will be provided across the Chinese Garden to connect Taman Jurong to Jurong Town Hall and Jurong East.
A public exhibition on the new Jurong Lake Gardens will be held from Mar 25 until Apr 1, where people are invited to share their views on the programmes they would like to see at the new gardens.
A construction tender for the central and east zones will be called in the middle of this year, and works are expected to be completed progressively from 2020.
As for the western part of the gardens, works started in April 2016, and it is slated to open early next year.