7/08/2012

The big man made garden




Some of you may remember the big fake volcano in Sentosa. Our latest grand attraction is in all counts another big artificiality in the vein of Hollywood, bright lights and humanly designed waterfalls, designer buildings and all the jazz. And the people lap it all up as the latest craze in town. It has outdone the cosplay event in town, where ordinary people could dress up as superheros or their favourite anime characters to live a few moments of fantasy.

In the new fantasy garden, many interesting programmes have been lined up for the visitors from food to education, and participation in all the botany related activities, understanding or getting close to nature in a souped up environment.

In an instant, one is transported into another wonderland of what humans think are desirable, to please the emptiness of dull city folks with plenty of money and nowhere to go, or not knowing what to do. It is a smaller version of the tranquil island of Sentosa, once a verdant little tropical jungle where one could enjoy nature, serenity, sand and sea for free. Like Sentosa, the new garden fantasy doesn’t come cheap for each visit.

What happens to the genuine century old Botanic Garden that is cultivated through time and by the hands of nature? What happens to the Wetland Reserves where a family could have a real taste of nature, practically for free? What is it like to enjoy a few hours sitting silently in the reserve, feeling nature, listening to nature and be a part of nature?

How much does it need to create this great nature disneyland that needs not be or could be created at lesser cost, lesser consumption of resources and expenses while preserving or destroying nature in the process? Could a more natural habitat living to the name of a tropical paradise, a little tropical jungle in the city be created in much lesser cost and much more nature friendly than this mammoth of human creation and achievement? How much more will it cost to run the attraction though the bills will be partially paid by the visitors?

What’s next? An interconnecting sky garden across the island like the hanging garden of Babylon, in much grander scale? Avatar was about the return to nature and its mystic, protecting nature and nature’s way of life. In the creation of our own Avatar, are we protecting nature or destroying nature in the process? The hidden costs and destruction to nature to bring about this wonder are not small in wonder. The continuous maintenance and creation of consumer demand and consumption in the whole process are the price to pay for this new gracious lifestyle, a visit to the Garden.

Do we need such a garden? Plenty of jobs are created which is good for the economy and economic growth. Do we need more of such jobs? Do we need more food and restaurants, more shopping centres and shops, build more expensive properties for sale to foreigners? Do we need to put up more containers to collect tin cans, plastics and papers to save the environment and mother earth?

41 comments:

Abao said...

i want to feel proud of that garden. in all it is actually a boast of our construction and economic muscle.

yet its construction reminds me of a certain anime, where people live in enclosed domes and will die once exposed to the outside world.

i cant help but feel bittersweet in that garden.

agongkia said...

I dun understand what is so good about fake volcano or having fantasy garden.
Wasting money to cheat myself visiting.
But I like volcano ,big or small.I prefer the natural one.

Anonymous said...

Unlike the simplicity of popular Hyde Park in London, a high tech garden will definitely draw mixed reactions.

Like the casinos here, we get the usual grouses. After settling in, less grouses and these places have even become iconic.

Nevertheless, some will feel the cold exterior of the garden. Could it have been designed better?

Of course :) and cheaper too

Anonymous said...

A huge greenhouse(shaded but pocket of sunlight) with clever ventilation to keep the whole place breezy would be good. What about some live animals and birds exhibits of much reduced scale of our zoo/bird park so it doesn't compete with them?

Man made waterfalls and fountains to give that cool finishing touches will be great too.

Well, can just forget it lol

Anonymous said...

Seriously, would you visit the park often? If most locals will not, I think it has failed its job.

Anonymous said...

When the novelty dies down, how many will keep paying $10 per entry?

Then the cost of airconditioning and maintenance, staff, equipment will eat into the budget.

Anonymous said...

Tourists will sustain it...no doubt but what a waste. IT COULD have been much better for locals AND tourists.

Anonymous said...

It is all for tourist. They can't be bothered with locals. Believe me!

When Sentosa was once green and natural, I visited frequently. Not now, after more than 10 years, i have never stepped onto it.

Then they wanted to turn Pulau Ubin into another man made tourist spot, but failed to convince. But, the delay is only a matter of time. Believe me!

In Red Dot, it ia just all much ado about nothing but inflating egos.

Anonymous said...

They have ample space to please everybody. It is sad that the whole project was not smartly conceived

Anonymous said...

It's not a garden ... dafties!

It's just a disguised land banking exercise.
To soak up excessive land supply in the surrounding area.

Anonymous said...

It's already done, no choice have to move forward. But we should not hire the same group of idiots for future projects.

Maybe name it Avatar Pay instead

Anonymous said...

Right, to soak up the excessive land supply in that area.

How else could they continue to offer land for bidding at higner and higher prices, citing scarcity all the time.

Anonymous said...

There are still some pockets of nature. However, they are either protected place or state land breeding mozzies and snakes. They are also places where shady activities take place, though protected, these protected places are not guarded.

Why are these unoccupied lands not used for veggy and or fruit production if poultry, pig and cattle rearing are not allowed.

WHY LET THEM GO TO WASTE?

Darling

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

How much does it cost to maintain Taman Negara or the African grassland and their natural inhabitants? What we have is only cosmetic, face lift, lipo suction, mascara, lipstips and sparklers.

We might consider creating an American prairie with buffaloes and real Red Indians as the endangered specie. It would definitely be a great attraction. And visitors can play cowboys shooting Red Indians.

Matilah_Singapura said...

Nature might be wonderful, but nature with the aid of human help is more awesome.

Matilah_Singapura said...

I was travelling from Changi along the ECP last night and saw the spectacle of the Gardens By The Bay, the super trees are awesome. The Cloud Forest and Flower Dome are intriguing structures, especially when you are zipping along the expressway.

SGD10? C'mon, you can hardly buy anything for that now. It's a small cost lah! Cheaper than most taxi fares! WTF?!?

Folks, the (Hotel) Singapore skyline is spectacular. Singapore IS -- by many accounts -- A FANTASY. Most of the environment is TOTALLY CONSTRUCTED -- because that is the only way you can sustain 5+ million (and growing) humans on a tiny piece of dry land.

When the "fantasy" is over, pull the fucker down and build something else. With limited land (land banking conspiracy theory or not), that's the wisest approach.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

It is the building and pulling down of such fantasies that is exhausting the earth of its valuable and limited resources. Govts must responsible in protecting the environment and mother earth.

Such fantasies to please the eyes are simply wasteful and irresponsible, and unnecessary. Where are the conservationists, the saviours of the planet....?

Ask a simple question, do we need to spend so much on this? Good to have but really necessary?

Anonymous said...

Next project, the tallest building in the world.

Matilah_Singapura said...

Absolute rubbish redbean.

The "limitation" of resources is reflected in the market price for those resources. If it makes financial sense to pull down and rebuild, then pull the fucker down and rebuild.

Your earned revenue will either accord with your expectations for return, or you will lose money ;-)

Hotel's need to keep reinventing themselves to stay relevant to the fussy customers/ guests.

For me, I am a very demanding guest.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

From the point of view of a hotel guest, I can fully agree with you. But as citizens and owners of the land, we do not want to turn it into a hotel. There are many things at stake in the modern day slash and burn method of economic development.

One important aspect is the fengshui. You do not turn the fengshui of the old house and ancestor grave upside down. Doing that can turn a good and fortuitous location into a bad one, from blessing to misfortune. The rich people know about this. That is why they will keep their old homes intact and the graves untouched.

And they don't invite strangers into their homes. They never turn their homes into hotels.

Matilah_Singapura said...

First of all, feng shui is BULLSHIT. Most of the so-called "rich peple" in Singapore are foreigners, with the exception of the Chinese don't give a shit about your unscientific geomancy. They will tear down and build to make A PROFIT -- no other reason.

The locals AFAIK can all get fucked. Because of their decades of non-vigilance, they've allowed their cuntry to be taken from them for the exchange of "upgrading" and "baby bonuses" and "CPF top up schemes". So fuck them all.

Now they are crying mother-father wanting to vote out the crooks they willingly took "bribes" from. (BTW, the "bribes" were actually their own money taken away , then redistributed back. The idiots fell for the obvious con game).

I am a pink IC holding Hotel Guest. I can enter the cuntree with one thumbprint at the border ;-)

But sorry to say, I stand apart from my fellow citizens because i refuse to be a part of their self-sabotage!

Dee said...

I think the Gardens are a great idea. It's not right to compare it with places like Sungei Buloh or Macritchie because it is completely built on land which was reclaimed from the sea. Not to mention the fact that by the time of the British, a lot of our natural forests were already cleared for agriculture so it's a good thing (culturally and economically but not necessarily botanically) to create more green spaces for ppl to appreciate right in the city.

We should preserve what we can preserve of our natural heritage, but the gardens are a great way to enliven the urban environment and provide a bit of green relief.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Hi Dee, welcome to the blog.

Agree there are many merits to this new attraction. But there are other angles to look at too. There are always the pros and cons, just like more immigrants and high property prices.

While everyone is looking at the glitters, don't forget the downside and the hidden costs involved.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Oh Matilah, try to pull down the house in Oxley.

Anonymous said...

If I were a rich hotel guest, I would want the price to go to the roof as long as I can afford it. Then the place will be less crowded and I can enjoy more fully the space to myself.

Matilah_Singapura said...

redbean, and in time when Lee KY has passed on, and that house will either sell for tens of millions, or be pulled down and replaced by whatever seems to bring a better Return on Equity.

It's land lah. More scarce than gold in Singapore.

In fact after Kuan yew's death, and the entire area of Oxley Somerset River Valley is likely to be radically re developed, because over 40 or so years building in that area has been severely restricted.

I don't see the property game in Singapore stopping anytime soon. Now there's been a global coordinated printing of currency from all central banks.

Expect more asset "appreciation" in Singapore Property.

Matilah_Singapura said...

Anon 135

You make no sense. In order for the price to go up, you need crowds of people bidding up the prices.

If you want the place to yourself, then you must find a way to make everyone poor, so that they'll leave or die off.

You have it the wrong way around. Fixed land + more financially capable people = higher prices and rents.

Land Baron yet?

Anonymous said...

What super tree? Might as well build a super prick and shaft it up matilah asshole

Anonymous said...

I think the whole point to what the government is doing and saying is....artificial breasts implants are better than the real thing.

the moral of the Marina Bay Garden story is: fake is better than the real thing if you want to impress people with deep pockets.

More super tree assured

Anonymous said...

Fakes are as good as real or genuine
in Sin.

At least fake certs are said to be as good for employment as professionals locally.

Plastic beauty enhancements are also all the rage now, no?

Anonymous said...

One family's fortune will definitely change once Oxley Rise is redeveloped. How would this affect the country is another story.

Bring it down and you will bring down a lot of other things with it.

Anonymous said...

The supertrees look like giant broomsticks.

Very impressive

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

All the lightings mean more fuel are burnt, all just to look good.

Ok, go and save some plastic bags to save the earth. Eat less, don't waste,....

Anonymous said...

Well, the piece of prime land is rather large so the giant "broomsticks" may be handy someday to improve the productivity of cleaners and raise their wages by a few dollars

Anonymous said...

After the three pillars of MBS becoming our national icon, now we have broomsticks as another national icon. With luck, you may fing Harry Potter and the little girls flying around in the quiet of the night.

Anonymous said...

or we may use the broomstick to sweep away useless overpaid talents.

Ernest said...

Gardens by the Bay = Antiseptic nature. Another $$$ money making distraction

Ernest said...

Welcome to Broomstick Park Central Singapore, come see the tallest man-made trees in the world! Dragonfly lake with no dragonflies.
Malay, Chinese, Indian garden with nothing Malay, Chinese or Indian about them.

BTW, a mini "broomstick park" also appearing in Tampines central. Stupid town council copycats.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Hi Ernest, welcome to the blog.

A natural landscape/environment properly care for would be easier to maintain, and lasting in appeals. Artificial creations with all the high tech gizmos are costly to upkeep and destructive to environment. The fad will go off after a while.

Anonymous said...

What a waste. This is prime land with tremendous potential to do something that blows everybody's mind.

Expect "improvements" to the park in future.

Vikki Arrington said...

Gardens by the Bay = Antiseptic nature. Another $$$ money making distraction