Size & Population 14 Sq Km with an estimated 160,000 residents.
About There are seven sub-zones in Hougang; Hougang, Trafalgar, Rosyth, Lorong Ah Soo, Tai Keng, Defu Industrial Park and Sungei Serangoon. New Town is accessible via the Yio Chu Kang Road, Buangkok Green, Hougang Avenue 14 and Avenue 7 which links to Old Tampines Road.
History Serangoon Road was named after a member of the stork species called 'rangong' that used to live in the swamps around the Serangoon River. The Chinese on the other hand, referred to Serangoon as 'Ow Kang' (or Hougang in Hanyu Pinyin) which means 'back of the river' in Hokkien.
In the past, Hougang was a village area that had a large immigrant Chinese community who were mostly Teochew or Hokkien in origin. In 1928s, the British cordoned off an area in Hougang that is now known as Buangkok. This space was named Trafalgar and was used to house patients with chronic illnesses and mental disorders. The hospital for mental patients was called 'Woodbridge' after a small wooden bridge beside the site. Woodbridge has since been rebuilt and renamed the Institute of Mental Health, or IMH.
Residential Areas Hougang is a residential area and is part of what has come to be known as the 'heartlands'. It mostly comprises Housing Development Board (HDB) flats, especially in the main Hougang area. The town has some 47,000 units of flats majority of which are 4 room flats, the 4,300 and 960 executive and HUDC flats also serve to accommodate the population. There are also many condominiums there. Most of the private houses in this district are found in Lorong Ah Soo and Rosyth.
Most of Hougang is governed by Singapore's ruling party, the People's Action Party (PAP). However, there is a small area in Hougang that has been ruled by the Worker's Party (WP) since 1991.
The last kampong, or village, in Singapore can be found in Hougang. It is located in near Buangkok and the IMH and is named Kampong Buangkok. There has been very little development in the kampong; for example, the village's electricity is still provided for through the use of generators rather than power plants.
Services and Recreation
There are a number of shopping centres in Hougang. The larger ones are Hougang Mall and Heartland Mall. A few smaller shopping centres include Kovan Centre, Hougang Point and Hougang Green Shopping Mall.
There are many charity organizations located all over Hougang, usually sponsored by religious organizations. Surya Home, which is part of Sunlove Homes, is a nursing home for the mentally ill elderly that is located behind IMH. Also around the area is SILRA, a rehabilitation centre for recovered leprosy patients. There is also a branch of the Salvation Army within the IMH compound, as well as Pelangi Home.
Hougang's primary industrial area is located in Defu Lane, where you will find Defu Industrial Park. Most of the businesses here deal with low-skill manufacturing, from furniture production to automobiles and ice. These businesses usually sell their products wholesale. Sometimes they hold clearance sales that are open to the public.