SINGAPORE — Residents within the Sembawang vicinity are now able to enjoy new aquatic facilities as the Health Minister Ong Ye Kung officially opens the new ActiveSg Swimming Complex at Bukit Canberra over the weekend. Close to 1,000 residents came together to celebrate and enjoy the official opening which was also attended by Sembawang GRC members of parliament Dr Lim Wee Kiak, Vikram Nair, and Mariam Jaafar. 

The new ActiveSg Swimming Complex at Bukit Canberra will feature four swimming pools suited for different needs – a six-lane sheltered pool, an eight-lane outdoor lap pool (up to 1.8m in depth), a sheltered wading pool and an outdoor fun pool for children. ActiveSg is currently offering free entry to the swimming pool at Bukit Canberra up to Oct 22, 2023. Opening hours to the swimming pool are from 8 am to 9.30 pm daily from Monday to Sunday.

At the official opening, the Sembawang GRC MPs and the Health Minister participated in flippa ball and aqua aerobics with the residents. There were other activities, such as aqua zumba, aqua tabata, while some of the residents tested out the outdoor 1.8m-deep competition pool in a 20-lap swim challenge. After the event, Minister Ong shared on his social media that Singapore’s largest ActiveSg gym at Bukit Canberra will have its official opening on Oct 29 at 8 am. 

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Photo credit: Sport Singapore

According to Sembawang GRC MP Dr Lim, the idea for the Bukit Canberra integrated sports and community hub was first mooted more than a decade ago. It was supposed to open a few years ago, but it was pushed back due to the pandemic.

“This has been a project in the making for at least 15 years. We started talking about this 15 years ago, we should have a swimming pool. At that point in time, the problem was Sembawang was too small. Everybody either has to either go to Woodlands or Yishun. The residents have feedback can we have a swimming pool of our own,” said Dr Lim, who is the MP for the Canberra division.

“Finally with the help of everyone, we lobbied and successfully pushed for it. The whole concept of Bukit Canberra is contributed by all the residents. We have lots of discussion, focus groups with the residents to see what they want. But it is not easy with all the planning, and we are finally able to open now. We are supposed to open before Covid. But unfortunately once the Covid hit, everything was delayed,” added Dr Lim.

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Sembawang MP Vikram Nair, who also took a dip in the pool with the Health Minister and the residents, shared, “The broader thing about staying healthy is important. The benefits about swimming is that it doesn’t have a lot of impact on the joints. So it is a good activity if you are ageing and it is a skill you can pick up at any age.”

The swimming complex is part of the existing 12-hectare Bukit Canberra Integrated Sports & Community Hub. Last November saw the opening of the Bukit Canberra Hawker Centre, and an indoor sports hall opened late last year. This includes eight badminton courts, two pickleball or badminton courts, and eight table tennis tables too.  A polyclinic is slated to open towards the end of the year./TISG

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