Hawker centres to you might be about tradition and nostalgia, the warm and occasionally slightly run-down places where you had many meals at in your childhood or youth.
Many of us would associate it with long-standing stalls that have been around for years, and some of us would admit that the trade is one that is dying out.
Perhaps in an attempt to reverse this and to save the trade, there will be a new hawker centre opening in October at Jurong West Street 61, near Pioneer Mall.
Apparently, it will have many modern and interesting features to help it run more efficiently and make it more attractive for people to keep visiting!
In a considerate effort to account for low-income and thrifty residents, NEA said that every stall at the centre would provide at least two basic meals at $2.80, which seems to be the trend for new hawker centres nowadays.
Furthermore, the stalls are also made to provide at least two meals as healthier choices to cater to increasing sentiments about healthy eating.
So now, hawker centre isn’t just about cheap food anymore: it’s about cheap and healthy food!
The future truly is here! The kiosks are said to have self-payment kiosks so that customers can conveniently use cashless forms of payment.
This means no more fumbling with notes and coins and having to wait for change!
Also, in a bid to get diners to take responsibility for their own tray return and create less inconvenience for others, a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tray return system will be implemented.
This could mean that diners will have to pay a deposit for a tray and only get refunded when they return it at the designated points.
Alternatively, it could also mean that there will be smart tray return machines that make it more convenient for diners to return their trays.
It’s actually a good idea to force people to return the tray, eh?
The hawker centre doesn’t just stop at being a convenient location for a meal. According to NEA, on some days, fun community programmes will be held at the centre to make it more vibrant and interesting.
These programmes include possibly music performances, fairs, as well as cooking competitions. This sounds likely a fairly interesting scheme and hopefully it will bring some buzz and liveliness to the place that has always, well, been…quite quiet.
Just building hawker centres alone is probably not enough to keep the trade going. That’s why the ‘Happy Hawkerpreneurs Programme’ was started, whereby a few stalls at the hawker centre will be reserved for those who wish to join the trade.
These aspiring hawkers will undergo a year of hands-on training and learning about what being a hawker entails and afterwards will be allocated a stall to handle! How cool is that?
It seems that there is a lot of potential for this upcoming hawker centre to become a big part of the neighbourhood in Jurong, as well as to perhaps set the stage for a new generation of modern and more efficiently-operated centres.
Just in case you’ve forgotten, Yishun is having a new hawker centre, too, and it’s just as cool as this latest one.
Guess the authorities are on track to preserve the hawker culture, no?
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This article was first published on goodyfeed.com
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