WATTEN

Estate Upgrading Programme

Refreshing Watten Estate to serve residents' needs

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Announcement

Acknowledgment of your feedback and recommendations for Estate Upgrading
Programme

Thank you for your participation in our engagement sessions for the Watten Estate Upgrading Programme (EUP).


You have given us your views on what we can work on for the EUP, and these opinions have been helpful. We will be guided by what we have heard from you and will be looking into how to implement your ideas in greater detail, while working around the technicalities of doing so.

Latest Updates

2 June 2022 - Updates on Watten Drainage Upgrading

Dear Watten Estate Residents

We have been engaging residents over the last 6 months on PUB’s drainage upgrading plans for the Watten estate, to be carried out in tandem with the Estate Upgrading Programme (EUP).


2   Our engagement efforts include:

a) Two letters dated 3 Nov 2021 and 10 Jan 2022 alerting residents to the impact on trees arising from the plan;


b) Two Townhalls held on 19 Nov 2021 and 01 Mar 2022 to hear views from residents; and
 

c) Asking PUB to suspend their tender for drainage works until residents have had a chance to comment.


3   Some of our residents continue to be concerned about the prospect of mature trees being felled and replaced as part of drainage upgrading. My team and I share this concern. Therefore, we have asked PUB to consider alternative methods of repairing the drains without complete rebuilding in order to keep most trees. PUB has reconsidered our request and priorities. PUB revisited the sites and subsequently agreed to allow most of the damaged drains to be repaired in a less intrusive manner. This means that it is possible for most of the drains to be repaired and kept open; and for more existing trees to be preserved. This is good news for our residents who wish to see as few trees affected by drainage upgrading as possible.

4   At the same time, we would need to work closely with PUB to determine which streets would belong to the following categories:
 

a) Streets that would have their trees preserved and drains kept open after repair, with no expansion of pavement; or


b) Streets whose drains would be rebuilt and closed to create expanded pavements. Trees would be affected but replanting would take place after construction.

5   Please bear with us as the process described in para 4 would take time. Should you have any queries/feedback regarding the street you live on, please email me at hbtsimann@gmail.com and Watten Neighbourhood Committee Chairman, Mr Allen Cheong at allencjm@yahoo.com.sg. Thank you.

 
Yours sincerely,

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10 January 2022 - Watten Estate Upgrading Programme (EUP) - Drainage Upgrading

Dear Watten Estate Residents

1   We held a Townhall session on Friday 19 Nov 2021 to share information with residents on the drainage upgrading works that will accompany the Watten Estate Upgrading Programme (EUP). We thank the residents who attended the Townhall for sharing their views and suggestions. This letter serves to inform all residents on the likely extent and impact of the drainage upgrading works, and also addresses the feedback that had surfaced during the Townhall.

Relationship between EUP and drainage upgrading


2   Drainage upgrading will be undertaken by PUB for all estates undergoing EUP. It is usually welcomed by private estate residents, as most rebuilt drains can be covered, thereby creating new or wider footpaths. Typically, existing trees that are near drains being rebuilt would need to be removed; and new trees will be planted to replace them after the works are completed.


Status of drains in Watten Estate
 

3   PUB has studied the area and found that most drains within the estate need to be upgraded to cater to higher flow capacity and/ or their structural design lifespan have been reached and they need to be renewed. This means we can expect many trees within the neighbourhood to be felled and replaced. This would be the case even if we do not require new footpaths to be created from covered drains.

4   On behalf of our residents, we have asked PUB if it was possible to leave some of such old drains untouched, in order to preserve more trees. PUB’s assessment is that this would be inadvisable, as continued deterioration of the old drains could lead to poor drainage flow, creating grounds for mosquito breeding or increase flood risks. Ground settlement triggered by drain deterioration could also result in damage to public and private properties. Please refer to Annex A for more details. NParks has also been consulted by PUB on this matter. NParks has no objection to the removal of trees to facilitate drain reconstruction and will coordinate with PUB to  plant trees to replace those that are felled.

Key points to note
5   We therefore feel it is important to bring the following points to our residents’ attention:


a.  Many trees, including the larger and older ones, that are near old drains, will have to be removed in order to facilitate drain reconstruction;


b.  NParks is committed to replant more than the number of trees felled at permissible
planting spaces; and


c.  We will work closely with the agencies to create footpaths above reconstructed drains wherever feasible, but creating footpaths is not the reason for felling trees. As long as the drain has been earmarked for reconstruction by PUB, affected trees
will have to be removed even if residents feel that a footpath is not needed.

6    While every effort will be made to minimise the impact of drainage upgrading works on trees, the preliminary assessment is that most trees along the roads marked out as Category 1 and 2 in Annex B will eventually be felled and replaced at the planting verges.

 

7   As the site situation varies from house to house, the PUB project team will update each homeowner according to the public engagement plan shared by PUB during the townhall. Please refer to Annex C for more details. If there is further clarification required on drainage works, please email Ms Siow Wen Ni at Siow_Wen_Ni@pub.gov.sg. For general feedback, please email Ms Sim Ann at hbtsimann@gmail.com and Ms Janice Choong at Janice_Choong@pa.gov.sg.


Yours sincerely,

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Annex A

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Annex B

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Annex C

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1 November 2021 - Drainage Upgrading Works Overview

Plan for extent of the roadside drains under EUP boundary

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Roadside Drainage Summary

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Page 3

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15 September 2021 - Watten Estate Upgrading Programme 2021 Feedback

Dear residents of Watten estate,
 

Thank you for your participation in our recent engagement sessions. We have just completed the initial stages of the engagement process for the Estate Upgrading Programme (EUP).


You have given us your views on what we can work on for the EUP, and these opinions have been helpful. We have heard the need for enhancing mobility and the desire for more opportunities to get together with residents within the estate. We will be guided by what we have heard from you and will be looking into how to implement your ideas in greater detail, while working around the technicalities of doing so.


Other ideas, such as a hard court and an affordable F&B venue, will be subject to identifying a suitable location that is accessible and yet does not cause undue disamenities to nearby households. We will proceed on these items cautiously, and the EUP working committee members will be reaching out to some of you to refine our plans.


With your support, we are doing our best to make Watten a better home for you. We will be developing more concrete plans in due time and are looking forward to sharing them with you.

Yours sincerely,

Below are the results of the feedback from Watten residents :-

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Click the idea group buttons to learn more

 

A. Improve Walkability within Watten Estate

 

A1. Pavement Improvements

A2. Covered Drains

A3. Bin Markers

A4. Resting stations / shelters

Pavement improvements enable active mobility, which a lot of
Watten residents desire. It also helps people with disabilities
to travel around. However, these enhancements should not
invite non-residents into the estate.

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A1. Pavement improvements

 

B. Create Hubs for Social Interactions

B1. Hardcourt / Half court

B2. Community gardening

B3. F&B kiosk for Watten estate

Youths lack a spot to play in the estate and parents have
expressed desire for a safe play area for their children. These
are also potential areas for gatherings. However, a good
location is required so that it does not create too much noise
for nearby residents.

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B1. Hardcourt / Half court

 

C. Amplify the charm and history of Watten Estate

C1. Floral landscapes

C2. Activities to build estate identity

Floral landscapes improve the tranquillity and ambience of
the estate. It makes Watten more pleasant to walk around
and be in. Watten residents love being in nature, and this idea
would potentially bring in more butterflies and birds.
However, there have been recent improvements in this area,
and this is not a high priority.

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C1. Floral landscapes

Contact Us

If you have other comments or queries, we would very much like to hear from you. 

Phone

Bukit Timah Constituency Office Hotline

(Mon - Fri, 10am - 6pm, except public holidays)

 

6466 2912

Email

Ms Sim Ann,

MP & Grassroots Adviser to Bukit Timah GROs

hbtsimann@gmail.com

Ms Janice Choong,

Deputy Constituency Director,

Watten Neighbourhood Committee

janice_choong@pa.gov.sg