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About Toa Payoh

Toa Payoh


 is a district located in the Central Region of Singapore. It commonly refers to the Housing and Development Board (HDB) housing estate of Toa Payoh New Town, one of the earliest satellite public housing estates in Singapore.

The Toa Payoh Planning Area, an urban planning zone under the Urban Redevelopment Authority, encompasses the Toa Payoh New Town, Potong Pasir and the private housing estates in the Upper Aljunied area. The planning area is bounded by Braddell Road and Bartley Road to the north, Upper Paya Lebar Road to the east, MacPherson Road and Jalan Toa Payoh to the south and Thomson Road to the west. It covers a total of 845ha in land area.





Toa Payoh was once an extensive and notorious squatter district. Most squatters were engaged in farming and rearing pigs. The others were hawkers, factory workers, mechanics or domestic helpers. .The squatters started moving out in 1962 as a result of increased compensation rates and other practical inducements offered by the Government. Clearance work was able to commence and the redevelopment started in early 1964.. Queen Elizabeth II visited the area in the years 1972 and 2006.



Toa Payoh Town Centre


The town centre was the first prototype in Singapore. It is surrounded by separated neighbourhoods, each with its own shopping amenities and community centres, well served by a network of vehicular roads and generous open space separating them. The result, as in the English new towns of the 1950s, is that residents tend less to travel to the main town centre but rather to shop within their neighbourhood; if they travel, they go to Orchard Road or the town area via the MRT system, at the Toa Payoh MRT Station and the Braddell MRT Station, or public bus services at Toa Payoh Bus Interchange.

Nevertheless, with time, the Toa Payoh Town Centre has become increasingly popular. It has a busy atmosphere because, as with many shopping malls of the time, all commercial activities are concentrated along a single mall with high point blocks on either side and major department stores at each end. The shopping mall is actually L-shaped and there are two plazas, one with a branch library and cinema, the other with an area office and a post office. Each plaza has a department store at either end.



An apartment block in Toa Payoh New Town at Toa Payoh Lorong 6. The HDB Hub and point blocks at Toa Payoh Town Centre can be seen in the background.

Toa Payoh Town Centre



Toa Payoh Town Park


The distinctive viewing tower at Toa Payoh Town Park to the right, with the tower block of HDB Hub in the background.


The Housing and Development Board decided to allocate a large area of the Toa Payoh New Town for a garden-landscaped park, the Toa Payoh Town Garden, despite the pressure on land here for housing.

The town garden used to be popular with visitors who came from near and far to enjoy the display of willowsbamboos and the brilliant reds and yellows of theDelonix regia trees. At the heart of the garden is a 0.8 ha carp pond which contains a waterfall and a cluster of islands linked by bridges. The islands are arranged to provide a sequence of delightful walking experiences not only by day but also by night when the garden is lit. The garden is buffered from the noise and night-time glare of passing traffic along Jalan Toa Payoh by an elevated slope planted with thick rows of Angsanas. There are also a children's playground, seating areas and outdoor chessboard, a tea kiosk and a 27-metre high viewing tower.

Toa Payoh Town Garden was partially closed in 1999 to make way for a temporary bus interchange. After the new Toa Payoh Bus Interchange at the HDB Hub was completed in June 2002, the temporary bus interchange was converted to a landscaped park. Toa Payoh Town Garden was subsequently renamed as Toa Payoh Town Park.





Night view from block 79, facing north


The majority areas of Toa Payoh is located within the Bishan-Toa Payoh Group Representation Constituency, except a portion of Lorong 8 Toa Payoh which is in the Potong Pasir Single Member Constituency. The section which is part of Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC is divided four divisions, mainly Toa Payoh CentralToa Payoh EastBishan-Toa Payoh North and Thomson. The members of parliament areMinister for Manpower Ng Eng HenJosephine Teo Li MinZainudin Nordin and Hri Kumar of the People's Action Party, the ruling party of Singapore. The Member of Parliament for Potong Pasir SMC is Sitoh Yi Pinh of the People's Action Party.




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