Published: 05 February 2018
*769. Mr. Desmond Choo: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs (a) what is the progress on hardening and protecting our public spaces against terrorist incidents using vehicles; (b) how are commercial operators contributing to the protection efforts; and (c) what are the future plans to design public spaces with security factored in.
1. The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) is working with other government agencies to enhance security measures in public spaces against hostile vehicle attacks. This includes existing spaces, and selected new ones in the pipeline where measures can be designed upfront.
2. We adopt a risk-based approach in identifying locations to fortify, and the type and extent of measures to put in place. We have to strike a balance between enhancing security, the cost of the measures, and the impact on the public's daily activities.
3. We have started to deploy anti-hostile vehicle measures in the Orchard Road area. Crash-rated barriers and bollards were installed in some locations along Orchard Road in late 2017. More will be progressively installed.
4. There are plans to install similar barriers in other areas later this year. We have been consulting the local business associations, such as to assess the viability of the proposed measures.
5. Commercial building owners also have a part to play to protect their premises. Under the Infrastructure Protection Act, owners of large or iconic buildings, and critical infrastructures that deliver essential services, will be required to undergo a security-by-design process. They will have to incorporate measures to address security threats in the design of the building before it is constructed, or for an existing building, when it undergoes major renovation.
6. In addition, as part of the Safety and Security Watch Group and SGSecure engagements by the Police, building owners are given practical advice on how to mitigate vehicle threats. Building owners can also refer to the Guidelines for Enhancing Building Security in Singapore published by MHA, for advice on best practices and solutions to protect their premises.