About Canberra Sembawang
Canberra at Sembawang is a residential town and planning area found in the Northern Part of Singapore. It shares a border with Mandai to the south, Simpang to the east, Woodlands to the west, Straits of Johor to the north and Yishun to the southeast.
The name Sembawang was inspired by the Sembawang tree which is found in the area.
Sembawang has a long history of development. The town started as a Nee Soon Rubber estate. Its early inhabitants lived in Kampongs until the late 1900s when a majority of them were relocated to pave way for the development of the area.
Out of the government’s determination to keep the kampong atmosphere, the Sembawang MRT station was developed with a kampong inspired roof and served as a bay with a capacity of about 350 bicycles belonging to the workers who travelled using the ships.
Between the 1800s and beginning of the 1900s, the area was popular with pepper, gambier, and pineapple plantations extending from the Seletar River towards Sungei Sembawang in the northern area.
The Sungei Sembawang river that runs 4 km through Sembawang meandered towards the west of Sembawang Shipyard. The midsection of the river was redirected in the 1920s to reclaim the land for the establishment of the British Naval Base. The 1970s saw the straightening of the river in the Northern section to create a canal. The Southern section of the river that featured grassland, ponds, and mangroves was filled in the 1990s for the construction of Sembawang New Town.
In 1983, the government opened the Singapore Naval Base that championed the development of the area. Various military installations including barracks and air bases were established. Today, most roads in the area are named after various warships and admirals, and Royal Navy Dockyards to commemorate the town’s rich history as a naval base.
The town is currently well connected by Sembawang MRT station. Canberra MRT Station further enhances connectivity in the area by linking with various transport links. Sembawang is served by many shopping centres including Sembawang Mart, Canberra Plaza, and Sun plaza.
Sembawang Road is among the main roads constructed to link the naval base to the city in the South. It started as a track during the 1920s and was later given its name in 1938. Buses run by private companies were the major mode of transport in the area. Many villages lined the road, including Sungei Simpang, Chye Kay, Sembawang, and Chong Pang.
Most of the villages were demolished around 1970 to the late 1990s to create room for the development of Sembawang and Yishun New Towns. Kampong Wak Hassan was the last village to be demolished in 1998. Today, Sembawang Road is a key arterial that connects the Central and Northern parts of Singapore.
The present-day Sembawang plays a major role in Singapore’s shipment industry. Its incredible seafront and ship movements provide the residents with amazing views. The neighbourhood is packed with modern HDB estates, shopping centres, and several other amenities that offer residents everything they need. Sembawang has a well-integrated transport system consisting of MRT lines, road networks, and bus interchanges.