6 reasons Jurong will be a truly exciting place

View of the Jurong lake. -- PHOTO: FACEBOOK OF PM LEE HSIEN LOONG
View of the Jurong lake. -- PHOTO: FACEBOOK OF PM LEE HSIEN LOONG

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Sunday unveiled plans to transform Jurong into a more vibrant neighbourhood.

Here are 6 reasons Jurong, which used to be a swamp, will be an exciting place to live.

1. Jurong Lake Gardens

The Japanese Garden, Chinese Garden and Jurong Lake Park will be merged into a single set of gardens which PM Lee said will be a "people's garden" bigger than Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park.

The 70-ha Jurong Lake Gardens will be a place where community gardeners can create and maintain "show gardens".

The lake will be reshaped and the gardens merged to "create one beautiful set of gardens in the heartland".

"Heritage elements at the Chinese and Japanese Garden will be retained but refreshed as part of Jurong Lake Gardens," wrote National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan in his blog.

Residents can enjoy it as early as 2017, he added.

2. New Science Centre

A new Science Centre will be built on the north of the lake near the Chinese Garden MRT station to replace the 37-year-old attraction now sited at the south shore of the lake.

"Its location will enable NParks to integrate the future Science Centre with the new Gardens, combining themes such as science, technology and horticulture in a uniquely Singaporean way," Mr Khaw wrote in his blog.

Targeted for completion around 2020, it will have an entirely new concept and will be a "jewel" in Jurong.

3. Malls, malls and more malls

The Jurong Gateway is already a new commercial region with shopping malls such as J-Cube, Westgate and Jem.

The Big Box Warehouse Retail Outlet, which will house electronics and furniture companies as well as a hypermart, will open in 2015.

4. Institutions and hospitals

The Devan Nair Institute for Employment and Employability is situated in the area.

Other facilities such as Ng Teng Fong Hospital and Jurong Community Hospital will soon be completed.

5. Well-connected

The upcoming Jurong Region Line and Cross-Island Line, together with the improved North-South and East-West MRT lines, will improve traffic in the region.

The terminus for the Singapore-Kuala Lumpur High Speed Rail may even come to Jurong.

6. Lakeside housing

In the longer term, the Ayer Rajah Expressway could be shifted to create more space for lakeside housing, making it as pleasant as living near Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park or Punggol Waterway.

Mr Lee's announcement has put the spotlight on the western part of Singapore. Property experts say developers might now take a closer look at the area and be willing to pay more for sites.

Join ST's WhatsApp Channel and get the latest news and must-reads.