No need to turn Coney Island into park

I agree that we should not bring the concrete jungle onto Coney Island ("Safeguard rustic appeal of Coney Island Nature Park"; Jan 13).

There is no pressing need to open up Coney Island as a park.

We already have Pulau Ubin for us to experience what nature has to offer, and where people can soak in the rustic, kampung-like environment.

Offshore islands like Kusu Island, Sisters' Islands and Lazarus Island provide ample natural green space and sandy beaches for people to explore and escape the stressful city life.

Also, we have many reservoirs, parks, gardens and park connectors for people to exercise and relax in.

Even before Coney Island was officially opened as a park, the place was polluted by littering caused by human activities such as camping.

Now that more people can gain easier access to the island, the littering problem is set to escalate.

As highlighted in the Jan 13 commentary, the island's small and elongated size makes it hard to prevent human activity in the park area from adversely affecting wildlife in the non-park zone.

Most of the wild animals and birds might be shy. Should housing developments be carried out, these animals would be forced to find alternative roosting grounds elsewhere and we would lose yet another piece of our natural heritage and ecodiversity.

As more developments are being set up for Coney Island in future, it could potentially become a miniature Sentosa.

But what people actually need is for it to be an environment where the last vestiges of our formerly luscious natural jungle and wildlife sanctuaries can cling to.

Coney Island should be left pristine and as it is.

In hindsight, the optimal way to ensure minimal disturbance to the indigenous fauna and flora was not to have opened the island to the public.

Lee Kay Yan (Miss)