After much deliberation and site visiting, I had a few ideas in mind for my infographic which was either a heritage trail of Queenstown, iconic places in Queenstown or a guide for expatriates moving into the area. However, after visiting, I found that there was already an existing heritage trail of Queenstown and they even conduct weekly tours for the public. Hence, I thought that it wouldn’t be as interesting to make an infographic for something that already exists. Moving on, I also found it hard to make a guide for expatriates because of the fact that there wasn’t much entertainment in the area and many of the places that would typically be applicable to them such as shopping malls, food places etc. were pretty obvious and they wouldn’t require much of a guide for that. Hence, I went back to what makes Queenstown different from other estates? Queenstown is known for being the oldest estate in Singapore which makes it extremely rich in heritage. After much research, I found an interesting recurring theme amongst all of the heritage sites in Queenstown. Being one of the pioneer estates for many of Singapore’s early developments, Queenstown was the first for many things in Singapore for instance, the first estate for HDB blocks, first polyclinic to provide subsidized healthcare, the first neighbourhood public library and so on. I thought that this was an interesting angle to work on without making the heritage seem dull and overused but emphasizing on interesting “facts of firsts”.
During consultation, I showed some of my infographic style references to my classmates and one of them suggested why not I make it into a card game or board game format like monopoly!
I also referenced these minimalistic icon styles for a visual representation of the places mentioned.
As for the colour palette of my design, I took elements from the bright and pastel colours found at the Queenstown stadium and the “butterfly” HDB block.
Finally here is my final infographic!
I incorporated some food stop suggestions such as the famous katong laksa at Queensway shopping mall and braised duck at Mei Ling food street as well.
Pretty satisfied with my design and was happy with the overall positive feedbacks from everyone 🙂 However, Joy suggested that I could incorporate more visual elements related to that time period into the border instead of the current one which was a little unnecessary. Moving on from this, I hope to explore more of this style in my zine and maybe make it interactive(?) That’s it for now and thanks for reading! 😀
Before I embarked on my exploration of Queenstown, this was pretty much all I knew about the neighbourhood:
Queensway shopping centre has chio and cheap sport shoes with nice laksa and muah chee
Anchorpoint shopping centre, one of the best place for outlet shopping
YEP. Soooo I asked my friend whose boyfriend stays there and this was what she suggested:
” you can go visit the 2 new HDB blocks damn nice, skyville and skyterrace. Or queenstown library, that place freaking old sia. All those historical sites tear down to build condo already. Queenstown not much to see but the new hdb damn nice.”
Actually prior to visiting, I considered doing a heritage trail sort of thing considering how Queenstown was famous for being one of the oldest estates in Singapore. However, most of the old heritage sites were gone and doing a infographic on nice condos in Queenstown wasn’t exactly that appealing.
I also had my consultation with Joy before going down to Queenstown and these were a few of her suggestions of areas I should look into:
old amenities in the area
new buildings vs old buildings – what was previously in the area and what is there now
After which, I decided on doing a map of amenities, food and entertainment in the area, sort of like a guide for newcomers who may be planning on moving into Queenstown. With a rough idea of what to look out for, I set off to explore Queenstown!
I wanted to get an idea of the neighbourhood from residences so I did a list of survey questions.
How long have you been living here?
What are some of the places you usually go to eat, shop or for entertainment?
What do you like about these area?
What are some places that have been around for a long time? (old amenities, etc.)
Here are a few videos of interviews I did with a few of the residences. Disclaimer: Pardon my awkwardness and HORRIBLE mandarin thanks!
Resident 1 ( stayed here for 40 years)
50-60 years old
Good food at Mei Ling Street Market ( only wet market here)
Tanglin Hock Market( not in the zone tho)
” Da Zhong” market for groceries
not much entertainment in the area
most of the old shops have moved away
used to go to the swimming complex when she was younger
Pasar Malam in the 1960s/1970s were popular
There used to be a prison behind the library and a bowling alley which were both demolished
Resident 2 ( stayed here for 2-3 years)
20-30 years old, from Mauritius
Shopping at Queensway Centre
Queenstown has 2 McDonalds (lol)
Dawson Food Court
Alexandra Food Court
Suggested a Salute Cafe behind Alexandra food court
Resident 3 ( stayed here for 3-4 years )
18 years old, PR
Mei Ling Street – nice dessert, chicken rice, char kway Teow, Lor Mee
Queensway Shopping Centre
AnchorPoint Shopping Centre
Resident 4 ( stayed here for 40 over years )
70 years old
ABC market at Alexandra- nice fish soup and herbal soup
Queensway Shopping Centre
not much entertainment
After interviewing the residences, I got pretty much the same responses and decided to check some of these places out.
Queenstown Sports Complex
Singapore’s first neighbourhood sports complex. It comprises of 5 swimming pools and one of which is a 50-metre Olympic-size pool. The first thing I noticed about the stadium would be how retro the colours and infrastructure were. It was different from the typical stadiums we see in other neighbourhoods with its pastel paint and vibrate striking red, blue and yellow. I really love the colour scheme of the entire area. I wanted to take more pictures of the old swimming pool but got caught by the life guard for invasion of privacy.
I also found these “Heritage Trail” boards put at certain sites in Queenstown.
Mei Ling Market& Food Centre
This was another common suggested place for the best food and the only(?) wet market left in Queenstown. The most suggested food to try was the duck noodle/rice, dessert, chicken rice, char kway Teow, Lor Mee. However, sadly the chicken rice stall as well as a few others have moved to Holland V and other places.
Queensway Shopping Centre
I have been to Queensway shopping centre on several occasions to buy shoes so this wasn’t anything new to me. But it surprised me to find out this mall was one of the first multi-purpose complex in Singapore alongside Golden Mile and Katong. Fun fact, Singapore’s first public escalators were also installed in this very mall! I know Queensway is famous for their Katong Laksa and really nice muah chee as well as other Pasar Malam food. This mall is definitely filled with a lot of history and not just a place to get great bargains.
Alexandra Village Food Centre
I have eaten here a couple of times but never really took the time to explore this part of the neighbourhood. Asides from the food centre, I also found many interesting old shops.
Queenstown sure love their duck rice haha
Also found some really old school bakeries and confectionery stalls in the area. They sell traditional cakes, egg tarts, pastries etc.
I also found a really interesting shop that sells rattan furniture. The kind that my grandparents used to use.
While exploring, I also chanced upon this handmade Ang Ku Kway stall that one of my interviewees mentioned as well. I went to take a look and was surprised at the variety of flavours they offered asides from just the traditional ones. Judging from the long queues it must be really good.
Princess house was one of the few lasting historical sites. It was previously used as the headquarters for HDB. Many renowned dignitaries such as Prince Philip and Duke of Edinburg have visited Princess house to learn more about Singapore’s housing programmes. Even though the exterior of Princess house doesn’t look like much, the conservation of the building serves as a lasting reminder of Queenstown’s history.
Former Venus and Golden City theatres
I also chanced upon the place that used to be the former venus and golden city theatres which were Queenstown’s first two cinemas. However, they have both been demolished and they are now building some condo in it’s place.
Former Queenstown Polyclinic
There is also the former Queenstown polyclinic, which was Singapore’s first polyclinic to provide subsidised healthcare to residences. However, it has since been converted into a dormitory.
Queenstown Public Library
Queenstown public library is Singapore’s first public library. Lee Kuan Yew saw it as a step towards improving our standard of living by providing access to books which most people could not afford to buy. It has now become an identity marker of Queenstown which holds fond memories for past and present residences.
The “Butterfly” block
Block 168A is Queensway’s first curved HBD block and it’s unique facade was what earned it it’s name. Back then, HDBs were mainly built for function with simple slab blocks and point blocks. With its aesthetic facade, the “butterfly” block was an effort to encourage more innovative designs and character in public housing. The curves and colours of the buildings were definitely a sight to look at.
This pretty much concludes my visit at queenstown!
Post Exploration Thoughts
After visiting, I realise that my initial idea of a guide of Queenstown may not be that great. Firstly, most of the old amenities have shifted, most of the food places have shifted as well to commonwealth and Holland V area and to be honest, there isn’t much in terms of entertainment asides from shopping at Queensway, IKEA or anchorpoint. Furthermore, these are all pretty common and truth be told, you don’t need a guide for it when many people already know of these places. Therefore, I decided to play on the heritage and history of Queenstown. I scrapped the idea of a heritage trail since it has already been done. Throughout my research, I realise that Queenstown was actually the first for loads of things. The first polyclinic was built here, the first technical school, first library etc. Hence, I thought why not do an infographic for the lists of things that Queenstown was first for?
And this concludes my post!! Took me forever but thanks for reading!! 🙂
Sooo it’s time to get started on the second project of the semester! We were each given a neighbourhood to explore and find out about what makes that neighbourhood unique as well as interesting features in that area.
The place that i got was QUEENSTOWN! But before I went down to explore the neighbourhood, here are some secondary research I did on the neighbourhood as well as some research into infographics.
Your site/neighbourhood – some history/background/what is it known for?
first Satellite new town to be proposed in Singapore
named in commemoration of Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation in 1953.
pioneer of many firsts in public housing history in Singapore
underwent major development from 1960 to 1965 as part of HDB’s first Five Year Building Programme.
first estate to Launch “Home Ownership Scheme” in 1964
First 14-storey (Forfar house) and 16-storey public housing blocks (Block 81, Commonwealth Close)
First Blocks by Housing and Development Board (HDB) 45, 48 and 49 Stirling Road.
Block 168A, Stirling Road was the First aesthetic Block constructed in the year 1973. This block is also known as butterfly block
remains as one of the 2 HDB estates to have double storey terrace flats at was built by SIT in the 1950s to attract the well to do.
total of 5 neighbourhoods were initially planned for Queenstown, namely Princess Estate (present day Dawson & Strathmore estates), Duchess Estate (where Blk 6C and the Terrace Typology HDB flats are located), Tanglin Halt Estate (next to Commonwealth MRT Station), Commonwealth Estate and Queens’ Close Estate (comprising of present day Alexandra hospital)
place where many social institutions were established
1956, Queenstown Secondary Technical School was the first technical school
1963, Singapore’s first polyclinic was built along Margaret Drive
1970, Queenstown Community Library, the first branch library in Singapore
1980s, Queenstown estate was becoming stagnant without much new developments.
1994, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) issued a Development Guide Plan for Queenstown
proposals for a new sub-regional centre in Buona Vista, new infrastructure to link tertiary educational institutions and business parks, and good, high-density housing.
rejuvenated in the form of the Selective Enbloc Redevelopment Scheme, whereby older flats were demolished to make way for new ones
construction of new private residential housing, the opening of Swiss furniture giant IKEA’s flagship store, and the launch of The Anchorage, a condominium-cum-shopping complex.
formally a swampy valley with two hills named Hong Lim and Hong Yin.
Hong Lim hill was a cemetery for over 100,000 Chinese graves,
Hong Yin hill was covered with orchards and rubber plantations.
was formerly a A village called Bo Beh Kang, literally “No Tail River” in Hokkien, was settled by mainly Hokkien, Teochew and Hakka dialect groups.
area also housed a British military camp, known as Buller Camp
swamp, cemeteries, farm land and camp site were eventually cleared to make way for the development of Queenstown housing estate
In the 1990s and 2000s, many iconic landmarks in Queenstown, such as Tah Chung Emporium, Queenstown Remand Prison and Margaret Drive Hawker Centre, were torn down to make way for re-development.10 In 2013, three buildings in Queenstown, namely Queenstown Library, the former Commonwealth Avenue Wet Market and Alexandra Hospital, were announced to be gazetted for conservation under the URA 2014 Master Plan.11
What is ethnography and participant-observation? What are some ways collecting data?
Ethnography – the systematic study of people and cultures.
Participant-observation – one type of data collection method typically used in qualitative research such as interviewing, observation, and document analysis. Or the process of learning through exposure to or involvement in the day-to-day or routine activities of participants in the researcher setting
Data collection can involve active looking, improving memory, informal interviewing, writing detailed field notes, checklists, questionnaires
What is qualitative and quantitative data? What is the difference between primary and secondary sources of data? How would you go about collecting the two?
gathers information that is not in numerical form.For example, diary accounts, open-ended questionnaires, unstructured interviews and unstructured observations. Qualitative data is typically descriptive data and as such is harder to analyze than quantitative data.
gathers data in numerical form which can be put into categories, or in rank order, or measured in units of measurement.This type of data can be used to construct graphs and tables of raw data.
Primary data is collected by the researcher him/herself in response to a specific question with a specific objective whereas secondary data is not collected by the researcher him/herselfbut rather reliant on the survey results, interview recordings or experimental outcomes collected by others.
Primary data would be more tailored to the study, easier to control and accurate compared to secondary data that can be vague or outdated.