Bringing Kallang River into Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park
Tuesday, 10 July 2018, 2.30pm - 6.00pm
In 2006, PUB -Singapore's Water Agency-launched the Active, Beautiful, Clean Waters (“ABC Waters”) Programme to bring people closer to water through beautifying utilitarian drains and reservoirs, providing waterfront community spaces and improving water quality. The programme encourages the public to enjoy and take ownership of water, and to cherish water resources. At the same time, it also employs natural cleansing systems with selected plants and special soil media to cleanse rainwater runoff before it flows into waterways and reservoirs. These cleansing systems are collectively termed “ABC Waters design features”.
Kallang River @ Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park is a joint collaboration between PUB and the National Parks Board. The design concept was to integrate the park with the river, to bring park users closer to the water so they can enjoy it while appreciating the importance of clean water.
A 2.7-km long concrete drain (part of Kallang River) was naturalised into a 3-km long river that meanders through the park. The river banks were naturalised using soil bioengineering techniques such as fascines, brush mattress, geotextile wrapped soil lift and reed rolls. These materials were used to stabilise the slope to prevent soil erosion, and also form natural habitats that enrich the park’s biodiversity, which has since increased by 30%. This is the first time that bioengineering techniques, which combine engineering with aesthetics and ecology, are applied in urbanised Singapore.
The river was designed based on a flood plain, enabling multiple land uses within the park. In dry weather, the river flow will be confined to a narrow stream in the middle of the river, and the community can enjoy recreational activities along the river banks. During heavy rain, this same park land next to the river is used to convey rainwater downstream to Marina Reservoir, allowing it to continue to fulfill its drainage and water conveyance functions. Comprehensive safety features have been put in place to warn the public of impending heavy rain or rising water levels.
Other sustainable features implemented in the project include green roofs on top of park structures and vegetated swales within the park. These are all designed to facilitate infiltration, detention and sediment removal from rainwater runoff from the catchment before they enter into the river.