Budget debate: Pre-school to open at old Loyang Primary School campus

The Singapore Land Authority is working to bring in other complementary tenants to "introduce community elements" to the site. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM GOOGLE MAPS

SINGAPORE - The former campus of Loyang Primary School will be put to new use as part of a plan to refresh state properties, with a childcare centre slated to open in a two-storey building there.

The Singapore Land Authority (SLA), which manages state land and properties, is also working to bring in other complementary tenants, to "introduce community elements" to the site in Pasir Ris Drive 6.

Announcing this in Parliament on Thursday (Feb 3), Second Minister for Law Edwin Tong said: "These efforts, among others, will help to inject life into existing spaces in a manner that benefits both the business and the community, and keeps the use of state lands efficient, and of course, exciting and vibrant in the context of the community."

Mr Christopher de Souza (Holland-Bukit Timah GRC) had asked during the debate on the Law Ministry's budget about plans to repurpose and rejuvenate state properties.

Given limited land in Singapore, said Mr Tong, optimising use of such resources is integral to sustaining economic and social development.

He added that in deciding how to use these assets, the Government considers not only economic returns, but also how they can bring broader societal benefits to the community.

To achieve these aims, it ensures that state land is put to productive uses and state properties are well maintained, and used in new and innovative ways, he said.

To this end, SLA, a statutory board under the Law Ministry, has engaged extensively with market players to identify fresh concepts for existing spaces, he added.

Besides the former Loyang Primary School, there are also plans to rejuvenate Gillman Barracks, the old colonial barracks-turned-arts enclave off Alexandra Road, said Mr Tong.

The area already houses art galleries and restaurants, and the plan is to bring in tenants that will offer "creative lifestyle concepts" to complement the existing tenants and increase footfall.

SLA had previously said that this could include art galleries, co-working spaces, retail shops, sports and wellness, and food and beverage establishments.

Gillman Barracks will also be made more green as Singapore moves towards greater sustainability, with plans to deploy solar panels there, said Mr Tong.

When asked when the pre-school will open, a ministry spokesman said MyFirstSkool had tenanted the space and “details of the... start date will be shared when ready”.

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