SINGAPORE - A section of Orchard Road will be turned into a no-car zone and become a walker's paradise.The 660m stretch from shopping centres ION Orchard to Ngee Ann City, or between Scotts/Paterson and Bideford junctions, will be closed to all vehicles on the first Saturday of every month from October.-
As part of a six-month trial, shoppers can roam the street without worrying about honking drivers, who will be shut off from the stretch between 6pm and 11pm.
The Orchard Road Business Association (Orba) hopes that such a move will draw more shoppers to the shopping belt and revitalise the area, which is facing stiff competition from new shopping haunts like Marina Bay as well as suburban malls.
Shutting sections of road happens routinely on certain weekends in most major shopping cities, including London and Tokyo. And in Beijing, the Wang Fu Jing shopping street is permanently closed to traffic.
This also happens every year in Orchard Road, for big events such as the Christmas celebrations on Dec 25 and the annual Fashion Steps Out show.
For the new Pedestrian Night, organisers have been roped in to turn the street into a hive of activity.For the inaugural street event on Oct 4, for instance, there will be a mass tennis clinic.
Dubbed Tennis Pops Up Road, revellers can play street tennis, watch live exhibition matches and music performances.
The event is held together with the Women's Tennis Association finals, which will be staged here next month.Other events like a mass yoga session and a Christmas carnival have been planned till the end of the year.
The once-a-month street events are partially funded by the Singapore Tourism Board andOrba.
Mrs May Sng, Orba's chairman, said Orchard Road "will no longer just be a shopping belt but a vibrant lifestyle destination with an array of exciting activities for all to enjoy".
Edited by Mockngbrd, 25 September 2014 - 12:35 PM.