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Sembawang sports and community hub development: Some trees to go but more will be planted to retain landscape

SINGAPORE — To make way for the development of the 12ha site at Old Nelson Road into a sports and community hub for Sembawang residents, 200 trees will have to be felled.

Sembawang sports and community hub development: Some trees to go but more will be planted to retain landscape

The site of the future Sembawang Sports and Community Hub. Photo: Wee Teck Hian/TODAY

SINGAPORE — To make way for the development of the 12ha site at Old Nelson Road into a sports and community hub for Sembawang residents, 200 trees will have to be felled.

But in a bid to retain the landscape’s “pervasive greenery”, another 1,000 trees will be planted.

After a site tour on Sunday (July 3), Acting Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills) Ong Ye Kung told reporters: “If you look around, there are 761 trees on this hill. (With) this kind of greenery, if you walk over here, you’ll feel a discernible drop in temperature.

“Out of the 761 trees, we’ll preserve almost 600 of them, and we’ll replant another 1,000 using old seeds that the National Parks Board has collected over the years that are indigenous to the region and also to Singapore and Sembawang.”

The species that will be felled include coconut palm, acacia and albizia trees — “low-value” trees, in the words of NParks Senior Director (Design) Damian Tang.

Mr Tang explained that only smaller trees, which could pose a danger owing to their brittleness, would be removed. After being chopped, the wood from these trees could be recycled and used at adventure grounds.

“If it’s at the footprint of the building, but it’s valuable, we keep it. The design of the building will have to go around it,” he said, adding that species such as banyan and mango trees will be retained as part of the landscape.

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