By 2023, national servicemen will be able to access all their National Service (NS)- and training-related activities in a one-stop centre.
The NS Hub just marked the start of construction in a groundbreaking ceremony officiated by Defence Minister Dr Ng Eng Hen recently.
With the NS Hub, national servicemen will no longer have to report to various camps across Singapore for different NS services.
The new NS Hub will house the Central Manpower Base (CMPB), Military Medicine Institute (MMI) and a new Fitness Conditioning Centre (FCC) to meet all the services that pre-enlistees and Operationally Ready National Servicemen (NSmen) need.
It will even include an e-Mart for NSmen to stock up on their combat boots and admin t-shirts!
Currently, pre-enlistees attend medical screening at CMPB at Depot Road, and head to MMI in Kent Ridge for other specialist medical services. NSmen take their Individual Physical Proficiency Tests (IPPTs) at various locations such as Maju Camp and Bedok Camp.
Once complete, the NS Hub will be directly accessible via an overhead bridge from Cashew MRT Station along Upper Bukit Timah Road.
Gone are the long queues to "book in", as national servicemen visiting the NS Hub will be able to register themselves at e-Kiosks equipped with facial recognition technology. They will also be able to perform digital transactions through the NS Hub visitor mobile app and receive personalised responses about their appointments. Such technology is expected to reduce the overall waiting time for medical screenings by 30 per cent!
IPPT will be made more convenient for servicemen. Without having to "book in" to camp, servicemen will be able to do automated In-Processing at the NS Hub’s FCC. They can then simply walk up to the gym for their IPPT Preparatory Training or head to the sheltered running track to take their IPPT. Facing the Rail Corridor, the FCC will be the Singapore Armed Forces’ first purpose-built, all-weather facility for IPPT and fitness training.
Not unlike SAFRA Clubhouses, the NS Hub may well become a go-to spot for national servicemen to relax with their family and friends. The hub will feature a wide range of amenities that are open to the public – these include a food court, a childcare center and an outdoor community area with a running track and football field. For those into live entertainment, the NS Hub will also house the Power 98 Love Songs and 88.3JIA radio stations where visitors can catch their favourite radio DJs live on air. There will also be studios for the public to catch performances.
Visitors to the new NS Hub will be glad to know that the building will make use of renewable energy – energy generated from its solar panels can power more than 110 4-room HDB units a year! The building will also adopt energy-saving solutions such as the use of natural ventilation and solar shades for cooling. The NS Hub will make use of rainwater harvesting to collect non-potable water for irrigation and other purposes.
The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) urban training facilities built in the 1990s comprise clusters of low-level buildings replicating traditional shop houses and provision shops, without performance measuring instrumentation. Up to the early 2000s, these facilities had met SAF's training requirements and served the SAF well. Going forward, with more built-up areas, the Next Gen SAF requires better urban training facilities to deal with the new security threats and challenges that Singapore now faces. This need for SAFTI City (The Singapore Armed Forces Training Institute) was announced by the Minister for Defence at the Committee of Supply Debate in 2017.
Scheduled to open progressively from 2023, SAFTI City, jointly developed by the Singapore Army and the Defence Science and Technology Agency (DSTA), is designed to meet the evolving defence needs of the SAF, and to support training for a wider range of operations from peace to war. These operations include homeland security, counter-terrorism, and disaster relief operations. Its infrastructure will provide a realistic and challenging training environment for soldiers.
Built on current military training area, the key features of SAFTI City are:
a) Realistic and Challenging Training Environment. An integrated Transport Hub comprising a bus interchange, an MRT station with multiple surface exits, high-rise interconnected buildings, dense building clusters, multiple road networks, as well as other public amenities such as shopping centres, will allow for a realistic and challenging training environment.
b) Configurable Buildings and Changeable Road Networks. Built-in swing panels allow traffic flow and buildings to be configured to training needs. This will allow soldiers to encounter a different layout of buildings and street landscape each time they train in SAFTI City.
c) Smart Technology. SAFTI City will also be a smart city, leveraging smart technologies to enhance training effectiveness and soldiers' learning experience. Smart technologies include:
(1) Targets with Shoot-back Capability. Soldiers and smart targets will be equipped with sensors for monitoring and data capturing. When smart targets are engaged, they can respond by shooting back and retreating from the location.
(2) Battlefield Effects. Battlefield effects, which include the use of smoke and blast simulators, will be used to enhance training realism.
(3) Data Analytics. Battlefield instrumentations and video cameras will be employed to track the troops' real-time actions. Furthermore, training performance will be collated and processed by a data analytics system to provide accurate feedback to the troops on their individual and team performances. With gamification integrated into the training and detailed individual feedback, individual soldiers and teams can benchmark their scores against each other, motivating them to improve further. These technological improvements enable the SAF to train more efficiently and effectively.
Phase 1 of SAFTI City will have over 70 buildings, including three 12-storey blocks, simulated underground facilities, and urban training structures. With a total estimated gross floor area of 107,000 m2, phase 1 of SAFTI City will be able to accommodate brigade-level training.
Based at 7 Maxwell Road, the newly-opened Ministry of Fitness has access from Telok Ayer Street and is located directly above the Amoy Street Food Centre. Spanning a space close to 9,000 sq ft; Ministry of Fitness is also home to The Singapore Trampoline Academy.
Their facilities include: a well-equipped Fitness Suite, Dance Studio and Functional Indoor Bootcamps space. The classes they currently offer are Bootcamps - Military - Trampoline Fitness - Spartan Obstacle Training - Dance Cardio and NS Ready which is designed for those preparing to take their IPPT (Individual Physical Proficiency Test).
Led by Ex British Military and SG Army instructors, they aim to deliver innovative and functional training programs which are adaptable for all ages and abilities. Set the conditions for those training for their first adventure race, to beat a PB or to mix up current training programs, your goal is theirs and united both will achieve and make this happen.
The Singapore Trampoline Academy specialise as a training facility dedicated to the growth and development of competitive trampolining in Singapore. Developed by qualified and experienced international coaches, their facility offers trampoline programs for beginners as well as athletes who aspire to compete at an international level.
Suitable from 4-yr old to Adult classes, they cater to everyone. They have recently collaborated with Superfly Monkey Dragons, Singapore’s Progressive Parkour / Movement Academy and Agency with an experienced friendly international team. Master your body and mind, Reconnect with your spirit, Challenge yourself with SFMD in a fun, supportive space. Discover yourself through movement.
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