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History of Tanjong Pagar at Pasir Panjang
Bukit Panjang or popularly known as Bt Panjang, this planning area is situated in Singapore’s District 23 in the West Region. It is surrounded by the Central Water Catchment on its east, Choa Chu Kang on the northwest, Bukit Timah on its south, Bukit Batok on its west, and Sungei Kadut on its north.
The area is split into 7 subzones by URA; Dairy Farm, Senja, Saujana, Fajar, Bangkit, Nature Reserve and Jelebu. The neighbourhood is adorable for its serenity and quietness, which outdoors other older estates like AMK and Toa Payoh.
Bukit is the Malay word for ‘hill’, and ‘Panjang’ refers to ‘long’ or ‘length’. Hence, the name ‘Bukit Panjang’ originated from the Malay vernacular, meaning ‘long hill’.
Bukit Panjang has a long history since it was first documented on a map dating back to1826. The first recorded ‘tea plantation’ was in the 1920s. There were around 200 pineapple plantations in the area. These were spread across the North-East and South-East areas of Bukit Panjang town.
Some of these plantations were owned by people such as Douglas Candy, Tan Keong Meg, or even Sir Frank Dent. During this time, the pineapple industry was booming, resulting in many pineapple factories being built in the area. This industry significantly contributed to the town’s economy.
After the British left Singapore in 1963, a new chapter was written for Bukit Panjang, an area known for its pineapple plantations. The Bukit Panjang New Town was formed in 1970 and has since been a home to many Singaporeans. Between 1990 and 2000, Bukit Panjang grew in leaps and bounds with the construction of the North-South Expressway and the Jurong Lake Bridge. Bukit Panjang was also designated as a growth area under the Land Use Plan in the same decade.
Today, it’s also one of the most accessible towns because of its numerous bus services, MRT stations, and other amenities. There are still plenty of housing estates and industrial areas but not as many pineapple plantations as before. Some of the places of interest are the Bukit Panjang MRT Station, Bukit Panjang Plaza, Hillion Mall, Bukit Timah Nature Reserve, Bukit Panjang Park, tCHIJ Secondary.
Bukit Panjang has seen many changes over the years. From being a long stretch of land with many pineapple plantations to a bustling neighbourhood with plenty of housing estates and amenities, Bukit Panjang has certainly come a long way. And this place continues to be one of the most accessible towns to live in, yet, it has managed to preserve its greenery. It’s no doubt one of the best neighbourhoods to live in Singapore.