Staying relevant

Visitors at the iconic Haw Par Villa on March 23, 2014.
Visitors at the iconic Haw Par Villa on March 23, 2014. PHOTO: ST FILE

Singapore Heritage Society's executive committee member, Dr Yeo Kang Shua, said it is equally vital to study Haw Par Villa's future use and its relevance to future generations.

Visitor numbers have plunged in the pasttwo decades - about 200,000 people visit each year, down from the million or so each year in the 1970s and 1980s.

Dr Yeo said: "Programmes need to be created to allow younger generations to form their own memories of the place. While it is important to look into the hardware of the site, the software in terms of the culture, morality stories, and how they can be made relevant to the young today, should also be looked into."

The president of the International Council on Monuments and Sites Singapore, Dr Kevin Tan, said: "It is essential that a place-making management plan is developed to ensure that Haw Par Villa remains attractive to visitors." He was referring to the planning, design and management of public spaces to serve the community.

Melody Zaccheus

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 01, 2016, with the headline 'Staying relevant'. Print Edition | Subscribe