URA: Boat Quay undergoing a makeover

Majority of stakeholders in Boat Quay have given the green light to the plans to enhance the Outdoor Refreshment Areas (ORAs) along the promenade at Boat Quay. When completed next year, diners and visitors can look forward to an improved ambience and enhanced public realm.

Ground-up initiative to improve historic precinct

This project was initiated by Singapore River One (SRO) as part of their business plan to enhance the Singapore River precinct. SRO garnered support from stakeholders before putting forward a proposal to the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) to implement the project.

Mr Ng Lang, Chief Executive Officer, URA said, “The Singapore River is an important precinct that reflects our history. The Boat Quay area in particular, offers a unique riverside dining experience set amid our conserved shophouses. We are happy to partner Singapore River One to enhance the Boat Quay promenade and create open spaces along the promenade that will allow the public to enjoy views of the Singapore River. This project is a wonderful example of how the place managers of a precinct can take the lead to galvanise stakeholders’ support to improve their precinct. We hope more place managers will be inspired to do the same for their precincts.”

The URA appointed a consultant team last year to develop detailed proposals for the enhancement of the promenade and how the works could best be implemented. This included designing new ORA structures as well as creating three open spaces with new public seating and enhanced landscaping.

SRO, URA, and the consultant team engaged the stakeholders over a three month period from November 2014 to February 2015 to seek feedback and support from both the landlords and business operators on the proposed enhancements and construction timeline.

Mr Wilson Tan, Chairman of SRO said, “As part of our place management efforts for Singapore River, we want to improve the physical environment and capitalise on the strategic location of Boat Quay within the Central Business District. We believe the enhanced ORAs will offer a better visitor and dining experience. This initiative could only proceed with the input from the Boat Quay stakeholders and we are heartened that a majority of them have put their faith in us by expressing their support for this project.”

Improved public realm

Towards the end of 2016, the public can look forward to a refreshed riverfront promenade with new ORA structures. Three new open spaces will enable the public to enjoy views to and from the river and better appreciate the conservation shophouses along Boat Quay. The works will improve both the physical environment and fire safety as the existing overhanging wires across the promenade will be removed and located underground to serve the new ORA structures.

Artist’s impression of open spaces along the Boat Quay promenade

New ORAs designed in consultation with stakeholders

The new ORA structures are designed to take into consideration the stakeholders’ feedback and business needs. They will provide for a more open dining area during good weather for diners to appreciate views to the river and will include retractable canopies that can be lowered to provide protection from the rain. Slots have been designed for menu boards and signage, and beams provided from which to mount lights and fans. The timber-like floor decking was also specially chosen for easy maintenance.

Artist’s impression of new ORA structures with retractable canopies

Refer to Annex A for more information on the existing ORAs at Boat Quay.

The URA will be calling a tender in the second half of 2015 to appoint a contractor to undertake the works. The construction works is estimated to commence in phases from the first quarter of next year and will take around 10 months.


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