Clementi New Town
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Clementi New Town is located in the southwestern part of mainland Singapore and takes its name from Clementi Road, which also marks the new town’s eastern boundary. Landmarks in the area include the five-storey Clementi Mall which was officially opened in May 2011, the 12-ha Clementi Woods Park, and Clementi Stadium.
Clementi New Town derived its name from Clementi Road, which used to be known as Reformatory Road until the late 1940s. It has been suggested that Clementi Road could have been named after Sir Cecil Clementi, the Governor of the Straits Settlements from 1929 to 1934. Generally, however, the road is believed to be named after Sir Cecil Clementi Smith, who was the Governor from 1887 to 1893.
The Housing and Development Board (HDB) developed Clementi New Town, its eighth, mainly between 1975 and 1979. While existing private housing developments such as Sussex Estate and Clementi Housing Estate (both of which no longer exist) were retained, HDB resettled more than 800 villagers to clear the area for the new town’s construction. Backyard trades and cottage industries were also relocated. In addition, there were swamps along the area where the new town now borders West Coast Park and these were reclaimed using earth taken from the town’s northern hills.
Like HDB’s other new town projects, Clementi New Town was designed to be self-sufficient, with space planned for a town centre, neighbourhood centres, transport nodes, schools and recreational facilities to serve the diverse needs of the town’s residents.
Clementi New Town covers a land area of 408ha, including both private and public housing developments. As at 31 March 2010, public housing (i.e. those managed by HDB) in the new town totalled 23,871 units and accommodated 74,500 Singapore citizens and permanent residents. Besides Clementi Road, the two other arterial roads that serve the new town are the Ayer Rajah Expressway which runs through the heart of the town, and the West Coast Highway which marks its southwestern boundary.
Major public amenities in the new town include Clementi Stadium, Clementi Swimming Complex, Clementi Community Club and Clementi Woods Park. There are also several schools in the area, such as the NUS High School of Mathematics and Science, Nan Hua High School, Clementi Primary School and the Japanese Supplementary School. The National University of Singapore, Ngee Ann Polytechnic and Singapore Polytechnic are often associated with Clementi, but they actually lie just outside the boundary of the new town.
The town centre, bounded by Commonwealth Avenue West and Clementi Avenue 3, occupies a central location in the new town. Serving the entire town population, it offers a comprehensive range of amenities including a polyclinic, a library, a market-cum-food centre, various eating places and retail shops as well as cinemas. From the town centre, residents are also connected to the rest of Singapore via the bus interchange and the mass rapid transit (MRT) station.
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The information in this article is valid as at 2011 and correct as far as we are able to ascertain from our sources. It is not intended to be an exhaustive or complete history of the subject. Please contact the Library for further reading materials on the topic.
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