URA probes barriers at Clifford Pier

A long couch across the walkway at Clifford Pier prevented pedestrians from entering parts of the Collyer Quay area.
A long couch across the walkway at Clifford Pier prevented pedestrians from entering parts of the Collyer Quay area.PHOTO: ST READER

The Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) is investigating a case where access to Clifford Pier was blocked, despite regulations to ensure the area remains open to the public after it was sold by the URA in 2006 and redeveloped into the Fullerton Bay Hotel.

In three photos dated March 2, obstacles such as a long couch and large potted plants could be seen blocking public access to parts of the waterfront at Collyer Quay, including Clifford Pier.

The couch cordoned off a part of the deck at the pier, while the potted plants were placed in front of doors leading into the Fullerton Bay Hotel, beside signs which indicated that the area was to be "accessible at all times".

In response to queries, a URA spokesman said: "Developments such as Fullerton Bay Hotel are required to provide a pedestrian walkway along the deck areas at Clifford Pier to allow for public access to the waterfront."

The URA will take enforcement action for any infringement of the guidelines after taking into account the impact of the infringement and circumstances of the case, the spokesman added.

When contacted, a Fullerton Bay Hotel spokesman said the hotel has yet to receive formal notification of the investigation from URA and thus had no comment regarding the incident.

When The Straits Times visited the site on the afternoon of March 6, the area where the long couch had been was cordoned off by workers conducting maintenance work on the flooring, while the potted plants had been removed from the front of the doors.

Built between 1927 and 1933, Clifford Pier was named after Hugh Clifford, who served as governor of the Straits Settlements - comprising Singapore, Penang and Malacca - between 1927 and 1929.

It was gazetted for conservation in 2007 after being replaced by the Marina South Pier.

Besides the Fullerton Bay Hotel, other developments, such as One Fullerton and Marina Bay Sands, are required to ensure public access to certain areas within their premises during operating hours.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 29, 2017, with the headline 'URA probes barriers at Clifford Pier'. Print Edition | Subscribe