Keeping Ubin's old school charm

Keeping Ubin's old school charm

When a place is known for being rustic and laid-back, how do you improve it and still retain that old school charm?

Thousands of people who live in or have been to Pulau Ubin have come up with more than 2,000 ideas on how the National Parks Board (NParks) can do just that.

The ideas range from protecting the biodiversity and heritage of the island to supporting educational and nature-based recreational activities there.

Studies will begin on how to solve a massive shoreline erosion in the northern edge of the 10.2 sq km island.

Noordin Beach was closed last year for public safety and studies will be carried out to determine the main causes of the erosion and ways to rectify it.

About 3,000 trees will be planted in the western tip of the island in an area known as Tanjong Tajam, where a large part of the forested area was destroyed due to forest fires during the drought in March.

More boardwalks with lookout points will be built to let visitors get up close to the island's plants and animals.

While some of the suggestions will need to be implemented soon due to pressing needs, others are still being discussed.

The Friends of Ubin Network (Fun) was also formed in March to facilitate discussions between members of the public and the authorities.

On Sunday, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong visited the island on Ubin Day, reinstated for the first time since 2003. Fun had suggested bringing it back this year.

Mr Lee said: "I've accumulated many good memories of Ubin, like many Singaporeans. And I hope our children, too, will also have the chance to do the same as they grow up."

This article was first published on December 4, 2014.
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