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Digital Punggol named Singapore’s first Enterprise District to support digital economy and create 28

Digital Punggol named Singapore’s first Enterprise District to support digital economy and create 28,000 jobs

On
Jan 21, the Singapore Government unveiled the masterplan for the Punggol Digital
District (PDD) which designates the district to be a home for key growth
industries of the digital economy. The District will open progressively from
2023.

The
masterplan was jointly
announced
by the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA), JTC,
Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) and, Urban Redevelopment Authority
(URA). According to a
report
by Channel NewsAsia, the 50-hectare development was
first announced as part of URA’s Draft Master Plan in 2013, while more details
were shared by Minister of National Development Lawrence Wong last
year.

Under
the masterplan, Punggol will develop as the first Enterprise District in Singapore that
integrates business and education, driven by technological, social and urban
innovation. As part of Singapore’s national strategy to sustain long-term economic
growth, new development areas across the island are designed to by highly
integrated and inclusive spaces to live, work, play and learn. Each district
will also play a unique role in Singapore’s future economy, giving it a distinctive
identity.

Located
in the North-Eastern part of Singapore, Punggol will develop to support the
digital economy of the city-state. As Singapore’s first Enterprise District,
PDD features higher flexibility in land use mix and scale. Aiming at building
an inclusive and sustainable district, the integrated masterplan approach will
see the establishment of a business park, a university and other community
facilities in Punggol.

Digital Economy

JTC’s
business park in Punggol will be home for various growth industries of the digital
economy. This includes frontier technologies such as cyber security and Internet
of Things (IoT).

Development is scheduled to commence this year. It is
expected to add approximately 28,000 jobs in Punggol and the north-east region.

The
clustering of these sectors in PDD aims at creating synergy to power the
digitalisation of Singapore’s economy.

According
to the Government press release, IMDA Assistant Chief Executive (Industry Development)
Angeline Poh stated that by clustering these growth sectors, the Government aims
to create an ecosystem of collaboration and innovation that enables businesses
and people to thrive in a digital economy.

New SIT campus for industry-academia collaborations

With
SIT research labs and learning facilities co-located within JTC’s business park
building, SIT’s new campus in Punggol will promote cross-fertilisation of
knowledge and collaboration between academia and industries. This space-sharing
arrangement is made possible by the flexible land use under the Digital Punggol
masterplan.

The
SIT campus will feature degree programmes that have a strong industry focus to
meet future manpower and industry demands. Collaborations will boost
competitiveness of students and allow them to develop skill sets required by
various thriving industries of the digital economy.

To
create a vibrate ecosystem for the digital economy, industry teaching laboratories
will be set up pilot programmes to support research work and learning, while
innovative enterprises will occupy start-up space within the campus to test out
new technological or business ideas by tapping on SIT’s research capabilities
and talent pool.

In
the SIT new campus, Southeast Asia’s first multi-energy urban micro-grid system
will be constructed as a collaboration between SIT and SP Group. The
experimental urban micro-grid system integrates gas, electricity and thermal
energy into a unifies smart network that seamlessly incorporates renewable sources
of energy and energy storage technologies.

As previously
reported
in Oct 2017, the micro-grid will be a national infrastructure open
to the research community and businesses in Singapore. This allows new technologies
to be tested in a controlled environment while providing power engineering
students the opportunity with work with industry partners and energy start-ups.

Promoting liveability and sustainability

As
the first
eco-town
in Singapore, Punggol has been a testbed for innovations that
promote liveability and sustainability.

To
support the development of the masterplan, PDD will see the optimisation of
infrastructure and technologies on a district-level. This aims at enhancing liveability
and reducing carbon footprint of the district despite various new developments.
 

District-level
infrastructure optimisation features effective energy, water, and waste
management. They include an integrated Facilities Management System for optimal
building management, a Pneumatic Waste Conveyancing System for automated waste
collection, Centralised Urban Logistics Hub for automated delivery of goods,
and IoT systems from the ground up that allows continuous digital
experimentation and innovation.

In
terms of energy efficiency, PDD will be equipped with a district cooling system
that enables about 30-40% space and cost savings while reducing the area’s carbon
footprint. Solar panels will be installed on roofs to generate clean energy to
the power grid.

Technology to enhance community living

Technology will also be used to enhance community living. To
support the Smart Nation Sensor Platform project under the Government
Technology Agency (GovTech), IoT and sensor technologies will be tested and deployed
in Punggol. These include environmental sensors to monitor air quality and noise
level, and cameras to detect, classify and count Personal Mobility Devices (PMDS)
in public spaces such as roads, cycling paths, and pedestrian walkways.

The Punggol community will also enjoy new amenities such as e-payment
technology and automated tray return system in a naturally ventilated hawker centre.

In addition, more green mobility options will be made
available in the PDD in support of Singapore’s car-lite movement. This includes
PMDs and even autonomous vehicles.

To find out more about the upcoming PDD, free exhibitions
showcasing the masterplan are set up and open to the public at the Waterway
Point until next Sunday, and will move to the URA Centre on Maxwell Road from
Feb 3 to Feb 15.

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