GE2020: Historic Admiralty House to be converted into public library – Ong Ye Kung

·2-min read
The former Admiralty House, a gazette historical monument in Singapore. It was previously used as a school. (PHOTO: Screenshot/Google Maps)
The former Admiralty House, a gazette historical monument in Singapore. It was previously used as a school. (PHOTO: Screenshot/Google Maps)

SINGAPORE — Through input and feedback from Sembawang residents, the historical Admiralty House monument will be converted into a public library, according to Education Minister Ong Ye Kung.

Ong, who is a People’s Action Party (PAP) candidate for Sembawang group representation constituency (GRC), revealed the plan during an e-rally on Sunday (5 July) by the party’s five-person team contesting the constituency at the General Election.

The former Admiralty House, located on a hill along Canberra Road, is a gazetted historic monument that used to accommodate key British military commanders based in Singapore. It has previously been used as a golf club, a restaurant and, most recently, a school.

“We asked residents what to do with it,” Ong said in the e-rally. “There were two overwhelming responses: Number one, don’t make it so exclusive, everyone must be able to enjoy it. Number two, it must have food outlets.

“So we thought long and hard about how to fulfil those two criteria, and we decided we will make it a public library. It will have a good collection of titles on nature, history and gardening. It will have a cafe surrounded by books, and an event hall where residents can mark special occasions.”

Ong said that, when the Canberra House Library is completed, Sembawang will be one of the few places in Singapore with two libraries close to each other, with a regional library already in Sun Plaza.

Together with other projects such as Sembawang Hot Spring Park and Bukit Canberra, an upcoming sports and community hub, Ong has assured residents that special care will be taken to preserve the unique rustic atmosphere of the area.

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