Mount Pleasant To Host 6 BTO Projects, First Launch In 2025
Due to the limited space on our little red dot, iconic heritage landmarks sometimes have to be cleared to provide for burgeoning housing demands.
However, the authorities do still try to make efforts to preserve parts of these landmarks.
In 2021, the Housing & Development Board (HDB) announced plans to redevelop the former Police Academy site at Mount Pleasant.
It seems like the plans are now concrete as they announced yesterday (13 July) that the first project will be launched in 2025.
Mount Pleasant BTO project to be ready in 2025, includes heritage features
According to Channel NewsAsia (CNA), HDB announced that the first of six BTO projects at the Mount Pleasant housing estate will be ready in 2025.
The site is located near Bukit Brown and the Central Catchment Nature Reserve.
The 33ha area is set to hold 5,000 flats once all six projects are completed.
Despite the redevelopment works, HDB has outlined their plans to ensure that heritage elements of the Old Police Academy will be “sensitively integrated”.
In fact, they will be preserving four academy buildings within the estate — Blocks 1, 2, 27, and 28.
Blocks 13 and 153, located outside the estate, have also been highlighted for “proposed conservation”.
Block 153 will continue to serve as the Senior Police Officers’ Mess, whilst Block 13 may be repurposed.
Additionally, part of the former academy’s parade square will be conserved as an open space.
Nevertheless, HDB noted that the other buildings will still retain their heritage significance.
The Straits Times (ST) reported that the authorities are working with heritage consultant Studio Lapis to facilitate the conservation of the buildings.
They will also head the repurposing of other heritage elements. This could include the possible salvaging of trusses and beams of the old drill shed, for use in the estate.
Studio Lapis will carry out an inspection of the shed to assess the feasibility of reusing the heritage elements.
They will also look into the dismantling and storage of these elements.
New names for 2 roads endorsed in May
ST additionally reported that The Old Police Academy Workgroup, which assesses the ways to preserve the academy’s heritage, also proposed two new names for two roads in the estate.
The proposed names are “Mount Pleasant Avenue” and “Old Police Academy Road”.
These names go along with the existing “Onraet Road” and “Wong Chin Yoke Road”.
The Street and Building Names Board endorsed all four names in May.
Minister of State for National Development Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim, who chairs the workgroup, told the media on 13 July,
We hope in this journey not only to preserve, but to make the process, as well as the outcome, alive for our people to relieve the heritage of the Old Police Academy.
It is heartening to see the authorities making an effort to conserve heritage sites whilst working to meet the housing needs of citizens.
We look forward to the gradual launch of the six BTO projects, with the heritage elements incorporated into them.
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Featured image adapted from Desmond Lee on Facebook.
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