SINGAPORE: The Chinatown Street Market will finally get its makeover from May 15, announced the Chinatown Business Association on Friday (Mar 10). Work is expected to take more than a year and finish by the end of 2018.
The refurbishment work will take place in phases to minimise disruption, especially during Chinese New Year and the Mid-Autumn Festival, to ensure that most of the market remains open, said the association in a media release.
Launched in 2004, Chinatown Street Market was designed to offer visitors a more authentic experience by re-creating the street hawking scene of the past. However, some stall structures have worn out over time.
"This effort is aimed at enhancing Chinatown’s visitor experience and improving fire safety," said the association, adding that shophouses will incorporate fire safety features such as water sprinklers and fire-rated shutters, which will be activated automatically when smoke is detected.
Standalone street stalls will have improved roof insulation to keep out the heat, as well as extended shelters and rain curtains.
All stalls at the street market, along Pagoda, Sago, Smith and Trengganu Streets, will be refurbished, said the association, adding that come end-2018, the Chinatown Street Market will be home to 140 stalls selling a mix of merchandise.
The Chinatown Business Association said it has engaged stall tenants, shophouse landlords and other stakeholders to help them understand key details of the project, seek feedback on new stall designs, address their concerns and make arrangements as necessary.
"Tenants have also been given a two months’ notice period and informed about the expected refurbishment timeline. The association will also continue to engage all stall tenants and shophouse landlords during the refurbishment period," the release said.
During the renovation works, signs to various attractions and businesses will be put up around the market's temporary hoarding. Fans and lights will also be installed along the five foot-way of affected shophouses.