NParks Introduces Camping Permits for Weekdays
04 Nov 2005
Camping on Weekends and Public Holidays Are Unaffected
The National Parks Board (NParks) announced today that from 7 November 2005, permits would be required for camping at the five designated parks on weekdays. The current procedure of not requiring a camping permit remains for weekends and public holidays.
To provide greater convenience to campers, and to promote healthy outdoor activities, NParks introduced a trial on December 2004 that allowed campers to camp overnight in the five designated parks - Changi Beach Park, East Coast Park, Pasir Ris Park, West Coast Park and Sembawang Park- without applying for permits.
With the lifting of camping permits, camping grew in popularity due to greater access and convenience. The number of campers between December 2004 to May 2005 increased by seven folds, from 1000 to 7800. However, NParks also noticed that there was a rising occurrence of overstayers squatting in the parks.
?There was a need to prevent overstaying at the public parks as the overstayers hog available campsites, inconveniencing the other park users. After studying the options available, we decided on this new registration process for camping on weekdays as the targeted approach ensures optimum effectiveness in discouraging overstayers, with negligible inconvenience to the genuine campers,? said Mr Kong Yit San, Director, Parks Division, NParks Board.
Under the new registration process, park rangers approach the campers, and scan their identification card. Once scanning is completed, the park ranger will print out a verification slip, which will then be attached to the respective tents. Scanning of the identification cards will be done on a daily basis. In addition to the registration process, camping on weekdays will also be limited to specific areas at the five designated parks.
Added Mr Kong, "NParks is constantly exploring new initiatives that will enhance the recreational experience for the community whilst being mindful of the impact the initiatives could have on other park users. In this case, we realised that the lifting of camping permits increased the popularity of the activity. However, it also prevented other users from enjoying the park with the presence of overstayers. Hence it was necessary for introduce relevant checks and controls.?