A new city boasting tech startups, eco-walks and even medical tourism is on the cards as Surbana Jurong drives the growth of Batam’s new digital park
With an established track record in developing master plans in many countries around the world, Surbana Jurong has been appointed the master planner for the development of a digital economy hub in Nongsa, Batam, Indonesia. The project was awarded by joint venture parties Sinar Mas Land and Citramas Group, leading property developers in Indonesia.
Surbana Jurong is responsible for the development of a concept masterplan of the hub, which covers 62ha – slightly larger than Singapore’s Botanic Gardens – including the Eco Digital Project, the Nuvasa Bay Town Centre and the Nongsa Digital Park. The consultancy scope covers urban design and architectural conceptualisation.
Nongsa is just 30 minutes from Singapore by ferry and 15 minutes from the Hang Nadim international airport in Batam, making it ideal for the development of the hub. The hub aims to be a digital bridge between Indonesia and Singapore to attract start-ups and local and international companies undertaking digital-related activities.
The digital economy hub in Nongsa will contribute directly to strengthening Indonesia’s tech and innovation talent pool, job creation and revolving door commerce. There are now 50 companies at the Nongsa Digital Park, such as online recruitment platform Glints and mobile payment services provider LiquidPay.
What’s coming up
The Phase 1 Eco-Digital development of 8.65ha will be anchored by 4 key elements of the new Tech Community:
- An Incubator Commune of Eco-Pod Offices and SOFO (Small-office-flexible-office) offices for tech startups
- A Tech Campus of River-view Offices and Fusion Hubs along the main river estuary near the ferry terminal.
- An Amenities Hive, planned with a collection of flexible office units, co-working/co-living, F&B and commercial spaces adjacent to the existing Nongsa Digital Park startup area in the east
- An Office Block with expansive sea views near the Nuvasa Bay Town Centre in the west
Linking everything together will be a series of experiential linkages, designed to stitch the urban fabric with nature, with a Mangrove Eco-walk, a Scenic Bridge and a Treetop Walk weaving through the Tech Campus.
Mr Wong Heang Fine, Surbana Jurong Group CEO commented, “ For this project, we are pleased that our creative vision aligns well with the desired market positioning which the JV has. We aim to deliver well to this project which is expected to further transform Nongsa into a vibrant and sustainable economic and cultural business hub.
Acting as a digital bridge linking Indonesia and Singapore, the hub will provide a conducive enclave for wide-ranging tech companies, from global tech companies to startups, to launch and expand their digital activities. We have set out to develop a masterplan which will be unique and attractive to technoprenuers and IT talent whom the hub is targeting, and also offers large spaces for test-bedding of smart urban solutions. Nongsa’s natural beauty, ecological diversity and cultural richness, will be infused into the masterplan, aiming to give residents of the hub an eco-community feel. We hope to hold up the Nongsa digital economy hub masterplan as an example of how Surbana Jurong creates spaces and designs infrastructure where people live, work and play, shaping cities into homes with sustainable jobs where communities and businesses can flourish.”
This hub is expected to transform Batam and Bintan – both popular resort islands with Singapore residents – and the surrounding smaller islands. Two examples are Tanjung Sauh and Buau, where residents do not use buses or cars and there are few signs of urbanisation, according to a report. Both will be part of a 7-km bridge linking Batam and Bintan with Tanjung Sauh and Buau between. When completed in three to four years, it will be the longest in Indonesia.
The Indonesian government has a huge infrastructure plan to improve connectivity in the sprawling Riau Islands province; the aim is to uplift Bintan and increase trade with Singapore. There are plans to boost travel and healthcare by building more hangars and hospitals.