Saturday, March 30, 2013

New sports hub at Jalan Kayu

The Straits Times  |  MARCH 28, 2013

Jalan Kayu residents will be getting a new $1.5 million sports hub in Buangkok, the first of its kind in the area.

The hub, to be completed by the first half of 2015, will have courts for a whole gamut of sports, including sepak takraw, basketball, street soccer and beach volleyball.

It will also have a skaters' area for young residents and a taichi corner for older ones, plus a sheltered pavilion with a stage where community events can be held.

The MP for the Ang Mo Kio GRC ward, Dr Intan Azura Mokhtar, announced the plan yesterday at a media briefing ahead of a ministerial visit to the ward by Ms Grace Fu, Minister in the Prime Minister's Office, next month.

These visits are undertaken mostly by newly-appointed ministers, who go down to the wards of first-term MPs every few months.

Approval from the authorities for the sports hub was granted a few days ago, said Dr Intan, after a lobbying effort from grassroots leaders that dates back to 2010.

About 90 per cent of the construction costs will be borne by the Ministry of National Development, through its Community Improvement Projects fund.

"This will really improve residents' lives," said Dr Intan. "It will help to build bonds not just among neighbours but also within families," she said.

Dr Intan also updated reporters on the new grassroots initiatives in Jalan Kayu. She is restarting a programme known as "Jalan Kayu Rangers", where foreign workers who live in dormitories help patrol the surrounding estates to stop their fellow workers from loitering and littering. They are currently being trained by the police and will start their patrols by the end of this year, said Dr Intan.

Residents in Buangkok Crescent, the estate which will overlook the sports hub, welcomed the news. "The one basketball court we have now is always full,"said publishing sales director Don Low, 43, who has lived in the estate for six years.

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