Jurong Town is located at West Region of Singapore. The name originated from the Sungei Jurong river which channels into Jurong Lake. The origination of its name has been disputed for long, although it is said to be derived from several meanings in Malay. For instance, the words shark, gorge, Penjuru all translated to Jerung, Jurang, and Jurong respectively. The native Malays named Penjuru which sits between Sungei Pandan and Sungei Jurong to Tanjong Penjuru which can be translated as Cape Corner. It covers Jurong West, Jurong East, Boon Lay, Jurong Island and Western water catchment at the south. Several offshore islands, Pulau Samulun, and Pulau Damar are also covered by Jurong. In the early 1960s, Jurong was industrialized which resulted from an economic situation of Singapore post-war. The heavy industrialization of the region paved way for the large-scale industrial sector. Today Jurong has become the most densely populated industrial areas due to the industrialization.
Jurong Town Landscape
Few maps documented this area. In 1828 the area was clearly documented by the British geographical survey. The two rivers, Sungei Pandan and Sungei Jurong described most of Jurong’s natural geography. Several islands such as Pulau Saraya, Pulau Ayer Chawan, Pulau Pese, Pulau Butun, and Pulau Sakra which merged to Jurong Island were also marked on the map. The present-day site of Jurong Lake was once occupied by two streams which have since ceased to exist. There were few settlements around Jurong before its development in the 1960S. Jurong coastline was dominated by swamps which yielded wildlife such as horseshoe crabs and mudskippers. Low hills which were leveled over the years were the highest points around Jurong. However, the British administration didn’t make the boundaries clear thus many residents have regarded Jurong road stretch as the boundary. The Clematis is located right in the heart of Jurong Town and Clementi Town and is located near to Clementi MRT Station.
Earliest Industries at Jurong
Large and small plantations dominated the area before the early 1960s which produced nutmeg, pepper, gambier, and pineapple. The main products for export were gambier due to its medicinal properties. The British Municipal Committee reported 20 legally gambier plantations within Jurong. Rubber was also a popular agricultural industry which was a strong competitor to gambier businesses. Rubber tapping practices overtook gambier plantations in the first half of 20th century. In addition, fishing was a prominent source of income for the Jurong locals which was mostly handled by the local Malay.
Jurong Industrial Estate
Singapore legislative assembly proposed the construction of a new industrial town on the 4th of July 1960 which was estimated to cost $45.7 million. By 1968 a total of 14.78 square-kilometers had been prepared with 153 factories fully functioning. With the constant growth of Singapore’s economy, a number of firms and heavy industrial companies have been set up.
The first few flats emerged between 1963 and 1964 which were developed by the Housing and Development Board. Jurong west new town started expanding in 1982 resulting in the realignment of the southern boundary. Jurong is well connected by Kranji expressway, Pan island expressway, and Ayer Rajah expressway which links the rest of Singapore.