The Float @ Marina Bay will be redeveloped into a permanent space to host “different scales and types of events”, that require fit-for-purpose or flexible event venues.
This was announced by The Ministry of National Development and the Ministry of Defence in a press release on Wednesday 15 July.
WOHA Architects Pte Ltd have been awarded the design consultancy tender for the redevelopment and will head the project team as Principal Consultant.
The enhanced venue will feature “various community sports facilities, such as a swimming pool and water sports centre”.
A new public waterfront promenade will also be built to complete the loop around Marina Bay.
“Supporting F&B and retail offerings are also being considered to enhance the attractiveness of the development.”
A National Service-themed gallery will also be built to “showcase our nation’s defence and NS story, and to acknowledge the contributions of our national servicemen past and present”.
Stories of servicemen from the Singapore Armed Forces and Home Team will be showcased through a mix of open and enclosed spaces using various multimedia platforms and hardware displays.
The redevelopment is slated to begin in March 2022 and completed by end 2025. However, this timeline will serve as a guideline taking into account the situation of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Former Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announced in 2017 that The Float @ Marina Bay would be redeveloped into a permanent space to be renamed as NS Square.
NS Square will then serve as the primary venue for the National Day Parade, although other large-scale events can be held, such as the Marina Bay Singapore Countdown and River Hongbao.
The Defence Science and Technology Agency, supported by the Urban Redevelopment Authority, called for design consultancy tenders between 30 May 2019 and 11 July 2019. One of its requirements was a seating capacity of 30,000 to 35,000, up from the current 27,000.
25 submissions were received and five were shortlisted.
A Tender Evaluation Panel felt the design proposed by WOHA Architects Pte Ltd “best fulfilled the objectives of creating an exciting and accessible community space in the heart of the city, and responded appropriately to the context of Marina Bay with a compelling vision and narrative”.
WOHA Architects’s founding director Wong Mun Summ said: “Our team is honoured with this opportunity to re-imagine the floating platform as a permanent distinctive venue at the Marina Bay waterfront.”
“The redevelopment will push for unity, diversity, sustainability and resiliency, commemorating the contributions of yesterday, celebrating the achievements of today, and inspiring the generations of tomorrow,” he added.