Our Water Heroes: Winnie Tan
Having joined the Marina Barrage team since its opening in 2008, Winnie Tan is no stranger to the events that happen around the barrage. Over the years, Marina Barrage evolved to become a popular lifestyle attraction, drawing crowds of locals and tourists in hordes.
One challenge that her team faced was the need to balance public needs and engineering demands. As a water facility, there was a need to keep the area safe and secure. However, as Marina Barrage was also a lifestyle attraction, this meant that it had to remain accessible to the public too. After several trial and errors, Winnie and her team managed to fine-tune processes on public engagement, and made use of technologies to reduce public inconvenience as much as possible.
Winnie shares that the most fulfilling part of her job is to be able to impart knowledge on Singapore’s water story to the world and create lasting memories for people. One of the most memorable event for Winnie would be hosting high level foreign delegates visiting the Barrage, such as former Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-Moon. Winnie also fondly recalls the first National Day Celebrations at the Barrage, and the SG50 performance by the Black Knights that caused a traffic standstill on the roads leading to the Barrage.
As the Senior Manager where she overlooks events, facility maintenance and visitor experience, Winnie has great aspirations for the Marina Barrage. With the launch of the newly revamped Sustainable Singapore Gallery, Winnie believes that it will be one of the many methods to reach out to the next generation on the topic of sustainability, and inculcate a greater appreciation for Singapore’s water ecosystem and infrastructure.
“Through the programmes and events that we have organised, I hope people visiting the Barrage can understand its three benefits – Flood Control, Water Supply and Lifestyle, and more importantly, that they too have a role to play in Singapore’s sustainability story.”
By Jaslynn Yeo