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March 18, 2009

Duxton Plain Park

Duxton Plain Park

After my recent visit to Duxton Plain Park, I formed the impression that there is nothing plain about it. In fact, I think Duxton Plain Park was the trailblazer of our modern-day Park Connectors. With some features already found in park connectors, plus a few extra unique sights, residents of the past already had a foretaste of their own version of a park connector.

This slim, elongated stretch of greenery that cuddles parts of Chinatown between Yan Kit Road and New Bridge Road has a long connecting walkway. Visitors can walk from Vanda Miss Joaquim Park at Tanjong Pagar Plaza to Kreta Ayer Road via Duxton Plain Park.

Photograph: Does this scene at Duxton Plain Park, with its fitness station, look like a park connector?

Despite being one of the older parks in Singapore, Duxton Plain Park is not just a plain stretch of grass and footpaths lined with outdated park amenities. Modern amenities are featured here, bringing Duxton Plain Park into the 21st century. A shiny fitness station sits on Duxton Plain Park to provide public physiotherapy for the elderly and fitness-conscious park users. A colourful children's playground, with plastic slides and ladders, welcomes young families with kids near Yan Kit Road.

Photograph: Children's playground in the background at Duxton Plain Park

There are directional signposts scattered throughout the park to inform park users of their whereabouts, similar to those located at modern-day park connectors.

An unusual aspect of Duxton Plain Park is this tunnel that runs under Neil Road. Cyclists may have a small problem crossing this tunnel because only stairs are provided, without a slope for bicycle access.

Photograph: Tunnel at Duxton Plain Park.

There are some interesting old buildings on either side of the park, with spiral staircases. You can see some of them in this photograph. They look much better at Duxton Plain Park than in the image.

Another attraction that I liked was the presence of several tall trees, with their massive vintage-looking trunks and buttress roots. Their long branches, laden with leaves offering plenty of shade, swayed in the wind as if to say: “Look at me, I may look old but I'm good as gold.”

On the whole, Duxton Plain Park gave me a 'homey' neighbourhood feeling, despite the hard-to-miss distraction of a nearby condominium project. While it may be a slight eyesore at the moment, when the Pinnacle at Duxton condominium project is completed, it should brighten up the scene and add more visitors to enjoy Duxton Plain Park's park connector function, amenities and natural green attraction.

See more places. Live more life.

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Sg Sky said...

Sounds interesting, certainly not a plain park!

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