SINGAPORE: When Kampung Admiralty opens by the third quarter of 2017, the 11-storey integrated development in Woodlands will be the first to have a number of amenities such as Singapore’s first automated bicycle parking system, housed under one roof.
A topping out ceremony on Saturday (Sep 3), officiated by Coordinating Minister for Infrastructure Khaw Boon Wan, marked the completion of the main building structure of Kampung Admiralty.
“We wanted to build a 'modern kampung'," Mr Khaw, who is also Minister for Transport, said. “Modern in a sense that we have all the modern facilities but kampung whereby we retain the good old world charm of a kampung, of a village and more importantly very strong bonding among residents."
Mr Khaw also said that he hopes Kampung Admiralty, which is located next to Admiralty MRT station, can be a model for similar developments in other parts of Singapore.
AUTOMATED BICYCLE PARKING SYSTEM SET TO ROLL OUT EARLY 2017
Set to be rolled out in early 2017, the automated bicycle parking system will provide secure and convenient storage of over 500 bicycles. Similar to the ones in Spain and Japan, cyclists can push their bicycles into a lift where they will be given a code or token for retrieval, and their bicycles will be transported underground, sorted and then stored in a cylindrical shaft.
Each cylindrical shaft contains 167 bicycle parking lots and there will be three such shafts at Kampung Admiralty.
“Quite unlike existing bicycle parks, it will be underground, therefore protected from the weather and more importantly it will be secured,” Mr Khaw said. “Of course, it costs us a lot more to build this facility and also to run it. So, we need to charge a fee. I hope cyclists will be understanding."
In countries such as Japan, users sign up for a membership where they pay monthly charges or are charged based on duration of parking. The Land Transport Authority (LTA) has said it is studying these pricing models.
The underground bicycle parking system will be on trial to assess user experience and its financial viability. If successful, the LTA will consider introducing the system to other locations around Singapore.
RESIDENTS LOOK FORWARD TO AMENITIES
Meanwhile, residents in the area say they are looking forward to the amenities at Kampung Admiralty, which include a two-level medical centre and housing for the elderly.
The Studio Apartments comprising 100 units are fitted with elderly-friendly features such as a retractable indoor and outdoor clothes drying system. The units went on sale in July 2014 as part of the Housing and Development Board’s (HDB) Build-to-Order exercise and almost all have been taken up.
There will also be an Active Ageing Hub and a childcare centre – the first time that both amenities are located within the same premise. The objective is to create more opportunities for the young and old to interact and bond through planned activities.
Admiralty resident Mr Umakant Aggarwal, 35, said: "I'm quite excited to see there will be a childcare centre. I can send my kids here."
Another resident, housewife Jessie Tay, said senior citizens in the area will benefit from the medical centre. "So, it's very convenient for them. They don't have to travel too far," she added.
Kampung Admiralty was launched in April 2014 and is a multi-agency project developed by the HDB together with other government agencies.