© 2020

Singapore’s Park System Master Planning

A Nation Building Tool to Construct Narratives in Post-Colonial Countries


Part of the Advances in 21st Century Human Settlements book series (ACHS)

About this book


This book traces the evolution of Singapore’s parks system, from colonial to present times. Further, it contextualizes the design and planning of parks in the general discourse on western and eastern traditions: early twentieth century western conceptions ‘imported’ during colonialism; modernism; postmodernism, and the contemporary ecological debate.

Park system planning products respond to national policies and result in structural urban elements and a range of park types.

Global (western ideology) and local issues have influenced park system planning and the physical design of individual parks over time. However, in Singapore the eastern literature has not addressed the development of parks and urban green spaces in terms of historical perspective.

The publication reveals the interrelations between visual representations and changing political ideologies. Singapore’s system of public parks is shown to represent an iconography created by the state. Its set of constructed narratives elucidates on the potential social, cultural and environmental roles of public parks. However, Singapore’s park system presents a novel paradigm for expanding Asian cities, characterized by evolving urban imaging strategies.

In framing Singapore’s case study within the broader perspective of eastern applications of western planning and design practices, and constructions of nation in post-colonial countries, the manuscript establishes the contribution of the Singaporean model of design and planning of parks to the international debate.


Cultural Landscapes Garden Planning Landscape Architecture Landscape Design Planning and Design Singapore Public Parks Themed Public Parks

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Landscape Architecture—College of Art and ArchitectureUniversity of IdahoMoscowUSA

About the authors

Dr. Raffaella Sini is an assistant professor at the Department of Landscape Architecture, in the College of Art and Architecture of the University of Idaho. She has held positions at various universities around the world, including five years as assistant professor in the Department of Architecture of the National University of Singapore.

Master’s degree in architecture and PhD in landscape architecture from University of Rome La Sapienza, Raffaella has a multidisciplinary background in architecture, landscape architecture, planning and public art.

She is co-founder, with Roberto Capecci and Marco Antonini, of the design collective LAND-I archicolture (2000-ongoing). Her focus on the exhibition of temporary narrative landscape architecture works has been documented in several journals and the international press, and has become part of her on-going research and pedagogy.

Her primary research interests are in the areas of designing contemporary landscape architectures and in cultural landscapes.

Bibliographic information

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