The 163ha nature reserve is home to many species of plants and animals. (Photo: NParks)
Bukit Timah Nature Reserve fully reopened on Saturday (22 October) following two years of restoration works and enhancements.
Restoration works began two years ago and included slope stabilisation works, restoration of trails, and the addition of intermediate steps to more challenging routes to make hiking more accessible.
To protect its biodiversity, the National Parks Board (NParks) also carried out sensitive enhancements, such as enrichment planting to enhance the forest habitat, as well as the installation of a raised boardwalk at various sections to minimise the impact of trampling on leaf litter organisms and soil compaction on tree roots.
NParks also installed railings beside the trails to encourage visitors to keep to the designated trails, reducing footprint into the surrounding forest.
Various sustainable features were installed at the upgraded visitor centre, such as the repurposing of windows to terraces for planter beds, and the provision of skylight panels to reduce the need for electrical lighting.
NParks also revealed that a comprehensive survey for the reserve was initiated in early 2015 while restoration works were being conducted. Although the survey is expected to conclude in 2017, interim findings revealed many rediscoveries and new records, including “the Malayan Porcupine, which was recorded at Bukit Timah Nature Reserve for the first time during the survey, and the Slow Loris, which was not recorded in previous surveys”, said NParks.
Bukit Timah Nature Reserve occupies only 163ha of land, but is home to about 40 percent of Singapore’s native species.