Adhering to the “3Rs” principles of maximum retention, sensitive restoration and careful repair, the recent restoration not only rejuvenated the fabric and space of the building but also, its reuse as a hub for trade associations has renewed the spirit of its original design and purpose.
WSP provided full architectural and engineering consultancy services to the restoration works, alongside Forum Architects as the monument design specialist, for this project.
On winning the award, WSP’s Mr Cheang Kum Cheong, Head of Architecture & Planning, Singapore said, “Receiving the award for Restoration at the 2018 URA Architectural Heritage Award is an honour for the WSP team in Singapore. The Jurong Town Hall is synonymous with Singapore’s nation building in the early days, and the team is privileged to be deeply involved in the restoration works of this gazetted monument. This enriching experience provided the team with a profound sense of history and the Singapore identity.
The building was first completed in the 1970s. The project team faced numerous challenges such as locating existing roof leakages, major revamp of the entire building’s cooling system, and railing heights that did not align with the current building codes. The team managed to overcome some of the challenges, for example, through obtaining a waiver from the authorities for preservation purposes.”
“The project has also achieved the BCA Green Mark Platinum award. The team incorporated several green features in the project, including natural ventilation at the main entrance and central atrium space of the building,” added Mr Victor Loo, Associate and project team member of WSP Singapore.
About the project
Careful and thorough research into the building’s architectural history provided pivotal direction for its restoration and design works. Externally, the building’s striking geometry was recovered through the removal of air conditioning installations on the façade and replaced with centralised systems. Ad-hoc partitions blocking the windows on the second storey were removed to restore original light and airy character of the space. It was through sensitive realignment and use of glass balustrades for universal access ramp that the grandeur of the main entrance was restored.
At the main atrium, a void at the far edge is a key feature that was previously blocked up. Through the restoration works, it has since been reopened to invite light back into the basement foyer. Materials and finishes such as ceramic tiles and Volakas marble have been cleaned carefully to reveal their original beauty. The initial design aesthetics of the cantilevered concrete staircase from the basement to the first storey was also retained. Through detailed research, significant interiors such as the geometric ceiling of the theatrette were recreated. In the auditorium, the G ceiling design was kept complete while new acoustic wall panels echo the original design intent.
Key green features include the replacement of existing unitary system with efficient water-cooled chiller plant; provision of energy-efficient air distribution system; extensive use of T5 lighting with high frequency ballast and LED lights; use of double-glazed glass to improve thermal performance of façade; extensive use of sustainable materials certified by local certification body; installation of MERV 13 filter for all PAUs; and the setting of relevant environmental policies to improve energy efficiency and water efficiency of the building.
To read more about the project, please visit: Jurong Town Hall