SINGAPORE – Members of the public will have the opportunity to get a first glimpse of Gardens by the Bay next week, seven months ahead of its official opening in June 2012.The Gardens will be opened from Nov 14-20 as part of the 20th World Orchid Conference (20WOC) held in Singapore this year.During that period, key features of the Bay South Garden will be on preview.
While entry into the Flower Dome will be limited to ticket holders of the 20WOC, members of the public will be able to roam around the rest of the other non-ticketed areas such as the Heritage Gardens, Dragonfly Lake, and the Supertrees in the Golden Garden and Silver Garden.
The public can now enjoy a week-long sneak preview of the Gardens by the Bay from Monday.The preview, which runs from Nov 14 to 20, is held in conjunction with the 20th World Orchid Conference.Visitors can enjoy some features of the Bay South Garden including the Heritage Gardens, Dragonfly Lake and the Supertrees in the Golden Garden and Silver Garden for free.
The Heritage Gardens features a collection of four gardens – Indian Garden, Chinese Garden, Malay Garden and Colonial Garden – which will showcase Singapore’s cultural diversity and colonial history through plants.After a tour of Singapore’s newest gem at Marina Bay, the man who envisioned Singapore as a Garden City declared: ‘I am sure Singaporeans will grow to love Gardens by the Bay as much as they do the Botanic Gardens.’
Mr Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore’s former prime minister, gave his nod of approval on Monday as he took in the bountiful blooms in the Flower Dome, one of three sections in the Gardens by the Bay complex being developed by the National Parks Board (NParks).
Gardens by the Bay consists of three distinctive waterfront gardens – Bay South, Bay East and Bay Central, spanning a total of 101 hectares. They are set in the heart of Singapore’s new downtown Marina Bay, encircling the Marina Reservoir like a green necklace. The Gardens will complement the array of attractions around Marina Bay.
Gardens by the Bay is an integral part of a strategy by the Singapore government that further transforms Singapore from a ‘Garden City’ to a ‘City in a Garden’, in which the city is woven into a green and floral tapestry. This aims to raise the quality of life in Singapore with a more holistic and all-encompassing programme that enhances greenery and flora in the city. First announced to the public by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during the National Day Rally in August 2005, Gardens by the Bay will become Singapore’s premier urban outdoor recreation space, and a national icon.
An international competition for the design of the master plan was held in January 2006 to elicit the best designs for the Gardens. This attracted more than 70 entries submitted by 170 firms from 24 countries, from which two firms – Grant Associates and Gustafson Porter – were eventually awarded the master plan design for the Bay South and Bay East Gardens respectively.
The Gardens are being developed in phases. Bay South is currently being constructed and is slated to be completed by June 2012. Bay East has been developed as an interim park in support of the Youth Olympic Games 2010, and is scheduled to open to the public in late 2011 or early 2012. The full master plan implementation of Bay East and the development of Bay Central are part of the next phase of development.