A 5.6m high waterfall takes centre stage in the newly-rejuvenated Yunnan Garden at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore that now seamlessly integrates with the Chinese Heritage Centre and an expanded Nanyang Lake. Comprising themed mini gardens and nature trails, the new space is now even more inviting for students, staff and nearby Jurong residents to visit and explore the various scenic spots it has to offer.
Built in the 1950s, the Yunnan Garden was a key attraction of the Nanyang University campus, the land on which NTU Singapore is now situated. With the just-completed revitalisation effort, the Yunnan Garden is seamlessly integrated with the Chinese Heritage Centre and an expanded Nanyang Lake. More than 1,000 new trees comprising over 80 species have been planted in the Garden, enriching its biodiversity. Other enrichments include a new 5.6-metre-tall waterfall, themed mini gardens, a boardwalk, a new stormwater management system, and Wi-Fi connectivity throughout the Garden.
The result is a 9-hectare heritage precinct – bigger than 12 soccer fields – that preserves the Garden’s legacy while enriching it as an educational and recreation hub, making it a go-to place not just for the NTU community, but also for the residents who live in the wider Jurong neighbourhood.
NTU Students’ Union President Bryan Michael Chiew Sen, a second-year Public Policy and Global Affairs student from the School of Social Sciences, said: “The new amenities in the Yunnan Garden are a refreshing addition to what we traditionally know as a heritage area with historical significance. With the rejuvenation, the Garden is now an invigorating break away from the classroom, and an attractive spot for students to have social gatherings. The spruced up greenery makes the Garden good for deep conversations and long strolls, which I’m certain will be beneficial for students’ mental well-being.”
Learning about plants and the environment is also part and parcel of a walk in the Yunnan Garden, which is designed around sustainability principles. The plant varietals in the mini gardens have been carefully chosen for their educational values, be it for their use as renewable energy sources or as sustainable alternatives to plastics, or their ability to remove pollutants from the air, soil and water.
The water features in the Garden are designed to create a stormwater management system that purifies rainwater before releasing it into larger ponds and reservoirs through drains and canals.
Integrating these lessons into the Yunnan Garden experience is part of NTU’s commitment to raising awareness about environmental sustainability.
Changi Airport Group (CAG) has made official announcement that expansion and renovation works at Terminal 2 (T2) will commence after the Chinese New Year holidays, beginning with check-in rows 9 to 12 in the Departure Hall. This marks the beginning of a multi-year expansion project which will increase T2’s handling capacity, as well as to replace facilities and amenities which are nearing the end of their shelf lives.
The expansion project will add 15,500 square metres to the terminal building and increase Changi Airport’s capacity by five million passengers per annum (mppa). This brings Changi’s total capacity to 90 mppa when the works are completed around 2024.
Last refurbished in 2006, the refreshed T2 will sport even more greenery and natural elements at every turn, in keeping with Changi’s signature garden theme in its terminals. There will also be space added in the Departure and Arrival Halls, giving more room to airport operations such as check-in and immigration clearance. Additional retail and F&B outlets will be introduced in both the public and transit areas, providing passengers and visitors with wider and refreshed options. At the same time, passenger touchpoints will be enhanced for a smoother and more seamless experience.
The refurbished T2 Departure Hall will feature a spacious common-use central Fast And Seamless Travel (FAST) zone, with more automated check-in kiosks and bag drop machines. With this, more passengers will be able to use these self-service options to check-in early. Concurrently, the existing rows of check-in counters in the Departure Hall will be transformed to better serve passengers. All in all, the passenger handling capacity in the hall will be increased by as much as 20%.
To facilitate the expansion works, some airlines operating in T2 will be shifted to alternative check-in rows within the terminal during the course of works. The two flight information display flip boards will be retired, with the one between Check-in Rows 9 and 10 to be decommissioned next month.
A duplex F&B concept will be introduced at the north end of T2’s landside leading to Jewel Changi Airport, to provide visitors with a fresh dining experience, while transforming this gateway to Jewel.
In the Departure Transit Hall, the Orchid Garden, which has provided calm reprieve to many passengers with its elegant orchids since 1997, will be closed to make way for a new garden. This new garden will showcase a revolutionary landscape design, incorporating a plethora of new plant species for the enjoyment of passengers when it re-opens.
To cater for more retail and F&B offerings for passengers, the commercial spaces within the Departure Transit Hall will be increased. In particular, the food street areas along the length of the Departure Transit Hall and overlooking the tarmac will undergo refurbishment. Designed to provide passengers with a garden dining experience, this area will incorporate dramatic green walls, hanging plants and soft lighting. More F&B kiosks options will be brought in, along with additional seating and a newly curated tenant mix for an enhanced dining experience.
In addition, all passengers, whether transferring, transiting or departing, can also look forward to refreshed waiting areas with more comfortable seating, relaxation zones and a new play area for children. New experiential zones will be introduced at various locations within the Departure Transit Hall to keep passengers entertained during their time at Changi.
To cater to higher passenger traffic passing through T2, the Departure and Arrival Immigration Halls will be expanded. Specifically, the Immigration Halls will be reconfigured to support additional automated immigration lanes. The Immigration Halls will similarly incorporate lush greenery, extending a warm welcome to our passengers.
To handle a higher volume of bags at T2, two existing baggage belts will be lengthened and another two new belts will be added, bringing the total number of baggage belts to 10. The Early Baggage Storage system will also be upgraded from semi-automated to fully-automated, allowing some 2,300 bags to be stored at any time.
In the Arrival Hall, a garden-like lounge will be created, where meeters and greeters can wait comfortably for their friends and families to arrive.
For the dining outlets in the public area of the airport, McDonald’s in the Arrival Hall will close on 31 January 2020, while Starbucks in the Departure Hall will cease operations in April 2020. The remaining F&B outlets in T2’s public areas will remain open for passengers and visitors until the later phases of the expansion works. With the refurbishment, a new cluster of F&B kiosks will offer additional quick bites options at the south end of the Arrival Hall.