SDP chief Chee Soon Juan: Two ‘new’ parks in Bukit Batok announced by National Development Ministry already part of existing Hillside Park

In another update on the development of the Bukit Batok Hillside Park, Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) chief Chee Soon Juan highlighted that the two new parks announced by National Development Minister Desmond Lee are already presently part of the existing forest in the area.

Noting a report by The Straits Times on 8 December, in which Mr Lee was quoted as saying that two new parts will be added to Bukit Batok, Dr Chee said in a Facebook post on Wednesday (9 December) that what was not reported is that “the two parks are already part of the existing forest [in] BB”.

Using the infographic ST had included in its report, Dr Chee highlighted a section on the map to show that the park — which the Ministry of National Development (MND) had renamed the Bukit Batok Hillside Nature Park — lies within the current Bukit Batok Hillside Park forest.

This can be seen in the area demarcated by the black line below.

“It now seems that the govt will go ahead and clear BBHP for development and then leave a fraction of the forest as BBHNP,” said Dr Chee.

The second part MND will develop is named the BB Central Nature Park, he added.

“As I understand it and as described in the ST report, this area is already a forested one. Why would the MND want to develop it into a park and then rename it?” Dr Chee questioned.

“Mr Lee tries to reassure S’poreans that Government aims to “strike a balance” between development and nature conservation,” said Dr Chee.

The public, Dr Chee urged, must “continue to safeguard the environment and call on the PAP to stop clearing the last vestiges of precious greenery on this island” until the Government “clearly gives its undertaking that it will not touch the current BBHP for more HDB development”.

He called on members of the public to sign a petition on Change.org, addressed to the Housing Development Board (HDB) calling for the conservation of the current BBHP to ensure a sustainable future.

It currently has 11,350 signatures at the time of writing.

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