Tanjong Pagar – Our Waterfront City
Sitting near the fringe of our central business district, Tanjong Pagar is a bustling place with many towering buildings and a rich history. In Malay, Tanjong Pagar means ‘cape of stakes’—derived from the location’s rich historic past of being a fishing village.
Within Tanjong Pagar sits a place called Duxton Hill, which was formerly a 13-hectare nutmeg plantation occupied by wealthy Straits Chinese families in the 1800s. These families were the people responsible for building the many shophouses that litter Tanjong Pagar today. Embodying an essential part of our country’s culture, these historical shophouses are now under the Singapore Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA). The architecture is preserved, but many of these shophouses have been converted into restaurants and pubs which operate into the wee hours of the morning, giving Tanjong Pagar a distinct bustle at night.
In the brighter hours of the day, Tanjong Pagar is also a popular food haven for Singaporeans. At the Maxwell Food Centre, one will find a wide variety of local cuisines at affordable prices. The complex used to be a market and food court, and it was renovated twice—once in 1986 and once more in 2001.
The URA is currently developing Tanjong Pagar into what is commonly-billed as the next waterfront city. It follows in the footsteps of Marina Bay—once merely a popular food haunt and kite-flying area for Singaporeans—which was recently developed into a beautiful place housing tourist attractions like the Marina Bay Sands and the Gardens by the Bay.
Right now, the watefront of Tanjong Pagar is owned by the PSA Corporation. It is home to continuous rows of cranes and stacked containers, waiting to be loaded onto ships. As the next waterfront city, however, the current landscape of cranes and shipping containers in the location will be turned into a lifestyle and tourism hub once PSA’s lease on the land expires in 2027. The waterfront city is planned with the intention of catering to the expansion of Singapore’s business district. As its economy and population grows, the district is planned to boast apartments, hotels and lifestyle facilities that will play host to the luxury needs of its working professionals.