Although the name might suggest a land covered in woods, Woodlands is actually an ultra-modern suburban town of Singapore, situated in the North West Community Development Council, which houses a variety of HDB flats, apartments and rooms for rent. This new town is part of the District 25, from where Malaysia can easily be spotted. Woodlands actually connects the southernmost city of Malaysia, Johor Bahru, with Singapore via Johor-Singapore Causeway.
Woodlands was indeed a wooded territory, one of the many regions in Singapore that have their history revolving around rubber plantations, and also villages and poultry farms. It was also known as the most important gateway to Malaysia. In 1823, when Singapore was a trading port, this region connected the Malayan peninsula to the natural port of Singapore, and in 1924 it was crossed by the current Johor-Singapore Causeway.
Woodlands developed actually from the old-style, but serene and lively suburb of Marsiling, included today in the neighborhood’s structure, along with Admiralty. As the result of the Causeway, Woodlands is always crossed by thousands of workers that commute daily to and from Singapore and Malaysia.
Today, the region consists of nine neighborhoods, numbered from 1 to 9, and has as town center Woodlands Square.
Woodlands is above all known as home to a wide selection of HDB flats and residential houses, and also one of the most popular neighborhoods in Singapore to find rooms for rent and roommates. Good-looking condominiums have begun to rise at the horizon of this new town, a region that was mostly dedicated to HDB estates, offering new alternatives for those in search for flats for rent and flatmates.
Its streets are lined with shops, eateries and commercial centers, while modern amenities such as playgrounds, multi-level parking lots, communal gardens and recreational facilities are spread through the town, and residents can reach them easily regardless of their apartments’ location.
The region houses also the largest neighborhood library in Singapore, Woodlands Regional Library, as well as one of the largest shopping malls in the country, Causeway Point, a 7-storey building where residents and visitors have access to no less than 250 shops and outlets.
The heart of Woodlands New Town is centered around the Woodlands Civic Center, which is home to the library, as well as banks, CPF Woodlands Branch, and several merchandise and educational institutions.
The architecture of Woodlands is eye-catching with futuristic and elegant buildings finding their way in the neighborhood’s scenery, and housing from modern offices to elegant residential flats.
The scenery is completed also by an abundance of oasis of relaxation, like the Woodlands Town Garden, which invites people to relax in the heart of nature and enjoy elements of decor, such as Chinese pavilions and Malay stilted huts, that remind of the Malay and Chinese culture. This park is crossed by the winding Sungei Mandai Kechil river that it eventually extends into an artifical lake. This coastal park has a 1,5 km long water promenade and covers an area of 11 hectares, housing a large, modern playground, and plenty of spots and venues for recreational activities and community events. The Sky Bridges and Sky Cabins attract both the young and the old, and visitors also have access to fitness equipment.
Panoramic views of the park and the Straits of Johor can be admired from the 400 m-jetty situated in the Woodlands Town Garden, one of the longest coastal jetties in Singapore.
For traditional architecture, visitors should go at the Arasakesari Sivan Temple, a Dravidian style masterpiece dedicated to the worship of the Hindu God, Shiva.
The spectacular Admiralty Park, which hides at the shade of a mangrove, is connected to the Woodlands Town Garden and a 25 km Northern Explorer Park Connector Network.
Those into sports will have plenty of venues to choose from, from the multi-purpose neighborhood stadium to the Woodlands Swimming Complex.
Woodlands is home to many educational institutions, such as the Republic Polytechnic, where the Republic Cultural Center can be found, a place where residents can pursue their interests in arts and culture, and also schools like the Evergreen Primary School, Evergreen Secondary School, Woodlands Primary School and Admiralty Primary School. Singapore Sports School, the first sports school in the country, is also located in this neighborhood. South of Woodlands, Innova Junior College, the newest Junior College in Singapore awaits for bright minds.
Woodlands is served by three MRT Stations: Woodlands, at the center, Marsiling, at the north, and Admiralty, at the southeast of the neighborhood. It is also connected with other districts of Singapore by major roads and expressways.
Most bus routes are operated by SMRT buses, and the region is also served by a large underground bus interchange, the Woodlands Regional Bus Interchange. The regional bus interchange is currently located at Woodlands Square, the town center. Public transportation routes are operating until close to midnight and serve efficiently the entire district.
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Photo credits: A place to run and cycle by Dickson Phua – used under CC BY