Singapore

Maritime Gallery reopens after nearly $2m overhaul

Singapore Maritime Gallery boasts more interactive features after nine month-long overhaul

There is no need for a licence to captain a boat at the revamped Singapore Maritime Gallery.

The gallery boasts a simulator of a ship's bridge - the room in which a vessel is commanded - where visitors can steer a ship through bad weather or in the dark of night to complete missions.

The simulator is a highlight of the 1,000 sq m gallery, which has undergone a nearly $2 million,nine-month-long overhaul.

The gallery, located at Marina South Pier, tells the story of Singapore's transformation from a small trading post into a global hub port and international maritime centre.

First opened in 2012, its contents have been updated to reflect developments in the sector, such as plans for the Tuas port, which will consolidate existing container terminals into a mega port. There are also more interactive elements.

Visitors can go "ship spotting" by pointing a tablet at the models on display. Information about the particular ship will then show up on the tablet through the use of augmented reality technology.

Two new spaces in the gallery have been set aside for events such as exhibitions and workshops, and a resource corner where visitors can access maritime-related materials and publications.

At its official reopening yesterday, Senior Minister of State for Transport Josephine Teo noted that in 1967, Singapore had to make a difficult choice: Build conventional port facilities that handle cargo of all shapes and sizes or invest in a costly container port, even though the use of containers was in its infancy and there may be no demand for container shipping here.

Decision-makers took the risk and built the Tanjong Pagar container terminal.

Today, the maritime industry accounts for 7 per cent of Singapore's gross domestic product, employing over 170,000 people.

"Singapore was not born a maritime nation," said Mrs Teo.

'CALCULATED RISKS'

"We became one, not by chance but by taking calculated risks and constant innovation. How did it happen? How shall we chart the way forward?"

Mr Andrew Tan, chief executive of the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore, said the refreshed gallery "will allow us to reach out to younger Singaporeans and interest them not only in our heritage, but also a career in the maritime industry".

The gallery is open from 9am to 6pm from Tuesdays to Sundays. It is closed on Mondays, unless it is a public holiday. Admission is free.

Museums & GalleriesSingaporeMINISTRY OF TRANSPORT (MOT)