26 July 2014
Spotting a brand new café or a stylish supermarket taking over premises of traditional trades is no longer a revelation is Singapore’s oldest estates. Gentrification, as it is called, occurs in neighbourhoods where land prices and rents have skyrocketed overnight, forcing many longtime residents and businesses to move out.
While old timers lament at the loss of their favourite roasted meat or provisions shop and argue that gentrification wipes out the social memory of an existing community or turns the neighbourhood into a hip and marketable cliché, it is also undeniable that these new trades rejuvenate the neighbourhood and bring about a certain kind of exuberance and business or tourism opportunities.
Is Gentrification inevitable in older estates?
Dr Chua Ai Lin, President of Singapore Heritage Society
Dr Chua Yang Liang, Adjunct Associate Professor, National University of Singapore (Department of Real Estate)
Mr Poh Chi Chuan, Director, Singapore Tourism Board (Cultural Precincts & Tourism Concept Development)
Mr Kelvin Ang, Chairmain, Tiong Bahru Seng Poh Residents' Committee