CapitaLand mentors secondary students in participatory design to develop sustainable solutions for community spaces across Singapore
Winning solutions by student beneficiaries of CapitaLand Young Architect Programme under feasibility studies for implementation by CDCs
Singapore, 3 November 2017 – CapitaLand is stepping up its efforts in engaging the public to co-develop sustainable solutions for public and common spaces in Singapore. Through its CapitaLand Young Architect Programme (CLYAP), 70 secondary students from low-income families went through a three-month mentorship programme centred on participatory design, to understand the spatial needs of users of various community spaces. These aspiring young architects actively sought inputs from residents and other stakeholders in their neighbourhoods to develop ideas for a diverse range of communal spaces, including void decks, pavilions for senior citizens and youth centres. CapitaLand today unveiled the students’ designs at its annual corporate philanthropy event - My Schoolbag.
CLYAP is funded by CapitaLand’s philanthropic arm, CapitaLand Hope Foundation (CHF), and supported by the People’s Association (PA), Community Development Councils (CDCs) and National University of Singapore (NUS). The students were mentored by product and design experts of CapitaLand who shared their in-depth knowledge of the building industry, and advised them on how to apply design and architectural concepts as well as develop feasible solutions for the community. Students from NUS ‘Architecture Design Facilitation’ course also joined as mentors. The CDCs are conducting feasibility studies to explore implementing some of the winning designs in their respective districts.
Mr Lim Ming Yan, President & Group CEO of CapitaLand Limited and Director of CHF, said: “CapitaLand Young Architect Programme was introduced not only with an aim to inspire the younger generation to play a role in shaping real estate of the future; it also sets out to empower the community in rethinking the design and infrastructure of public spaces around their neighbourhood. By adopting a more participatory design process together with the community, everyone became an integral part of this co-creation process. It also shaped the students’ design towards a more relevant and purposeful one. Tapping on the wealth of expertise and experience of different stakeholders and design professionals, these students wonderfully demonstrated through their respective works, how existing community spaces can be enlivened and rejuvenated through good design and programming.”
Mr Lim added: “CapitaLand has been at the forefront of transforming the built environment through our extensive design, development and master planning capabilities. We fully understand the significant effect a well-designed space – be it green parks, open plazas or shaded atriums, can have on our overall well-being. We are very pleased to be able to also involve our children beneficiaries in this journey of engaging the public in designing sustainable spatial solutions, and we will continue our commitment to create more spaces which are well used and loved by the community.” Take a look at Mr Lim Ming Yan's full speech at the event.
CLYAP culminated in the students’ prized works being featured in a public exhibition at the Level 2 atrium of IMM outlet mall, from 3 to 12 November 2017. Aside from having their projects on display, five students from the inaugural cohort who clinched the Young Architect Award, will each be rewarded with a special student immersion programme with CapitaLand during the December school holidays. The immersion programme involves experiential tours of CapitaLand’s iconic properties in Singapore and the opportunity to work with project development experts from CapitaLand.
In addition to CLYAP, more than 1,000 children from low-income families across the five CDCs including about 100 students with special needs will participate in this year’s My Schoolbag programme. With the support of funds from CHF, the underprivileged children will receive new schoolbags, school and daily necessities as well as enjoy fun edutainment activities. My Schoolbag programme is held in the month of November across four CapitaLand malls in Singapore – IMM, Junction 8, Lot One Shoppers’ Mall and Tampines Mall.
More than 150 children beneficiaries were at IMM this morning to participate in a series of interactive activities with the guidance of CapitaLand staff volunteers. The children learnt the value of money from playing a life-sized money management board game, as well as being instilled with a sense of personal responsibility through growing their herb of choice. In addition, the children went through a simulated shopping experience, ‘buying’ their school and daily necessities with CapitaVouchers. A highlight for the children was the tour of the CLYAP exhibition, engaging with the talented secondary school students and learning about their design ideas for the community.
From 2009 to 2016, CHF donated over S$3.5 million to support My Schoolbag, reaching out to nearly 126,000 children beneficiaries. For 2017, CHF has committed more than S$600,000 to My Schoolbag, which will benefit over 21,000 children across Asia - Singapore, China, Malaysia, Japan, India and Vietnam.
In May this year, CapitaLand staff volunteers and management worked hand in hand with a local community in Batangas City in the Philippines, to build new homes for 20 underprivileged families in its first eco village. CapitaLand led a group of NUS students from the Department of Architecture to conduct a participatory design workshop in a rural village, to better understand the needs of the locals and to identify facilities that would best serve the community, especially the children living therein. The village will have environmentally-friendly features such as an organic farm and local water filtering, and the houses are slated to be handed over to the families by end Jan 2018. A 30-year-old dad volunteer shares his account of the Philippines expedition.
Last year, CHF donated over S$2.4 million to benefit underprivileged children in Singapore and other countries where it operates, and contributed close to 20,000 hours of service to the community. In recognition of its strong commitment to helping underprivileged children and advocacy for volunteerism, CapitaLand has received the Community Spirit Excellence Award from the People’s Association for three consecutive years since 2015.
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Overall best design solution based on creativity, practicality, community centric scheme and technical competence.
South West CDC Team 2
The students wanted to give the common void deck area a different take, to cater to the needs of varying demographic groups, while serving as a communal space for bonding. The formerly utilitarian space was converted into an accessible and much-loved recreation spot, providing a new central gathering point for the community, as well as an event space for civic and community activities. Some of the features include a communal kitchen, an imagination corner, and a herb garden.
For the design solution that displays the ability to innovate with new approaches that are novel and inventive.
North West CDC Team 2
The team came up with a solution to enhance a pavilion by providing greater accessibility for the public in any weather with multiple entry points, and 180-degree foldable chairs that are friendly to the elderly as well as wheelchair users. The pavilion also comes decked with lush greenery to provide pleasant and nature relief, and a skylight feature that brightens up the centre of the space.
For the best technical competence in schematics and 3D modelling as well as presentation delivery.
South East CDC Team 1
One of the issues the team had to address was a social gap between the students of VOX and its community. The team proposed a design with communal features for the void deck and youth centre space, which is safe and comfortable for youths to gather, giving them a sense of ownership. This includes an outdoor lounge and resting area for the community to enjoy a relaxing time with ample shade, as well as green features in the form of a greenhouse and urban garden to foster greater cohesion.