Assoc Prof Daniel Goh Pei Siong asked the Minister for Culture, Community and Youth with regard to open fields in HDB estates that are fenced up and managed by the People's Association such as the large field behind Punggol Community Club (a) whether these decisions to fence up the fields have been made in consultation with residents; (b) what are their utilisation rates on weekdays compared to on weekends; and (c) whether the fields can be opened up during weekdays and off-peak periods for families to enjoy without the need for booking.
Mr Chan Chun Sing (for the Minister for Culture, Community and Youth): Open fields are managed by various Government agencies and statutory bodies, including the People’s Association (PA). For fields managed by PA, their primary purpose is for community use.
The local residents will work with the GROs to determine if there is any need to fence up a field. The usual considerations are safety of use, security, noise management and maintenance. For example, the said field in Punggol was fenced up upon residents’ request for safety and noise management considerations.
Utilisation rates vary and depend on various factors. They are generally higher during weekends and school holidays.
All local residents are welcome to use the fields for community activities and can make a simple booking with the local GROs.