Singapore’s first large-scale inclusive outdoor adventure facility will support student learning, research and community collaboration
Mr David Wong, Chairman, Board of Governors, RP; Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Senior Minister and Coordinating Minister for Social Policies; Mr Yeo Li Pheow, Principal/CEO, RP; and Ms Goy Soon Lan, Director, School of Sports, Health and Leisure, RP, commemorating the official opening of the XLC
Republic Polytechnic (RP) today unveiled Singapore’s first large-scale inclusive outdoor adventure facility, the Xperiential Learning Centre (XLC), on the first day of its Open House 2022. A purpose-built, weather-proof 20-metre tall tower that is equivalent to the height of a seven-storey building, the facility on the RP campus is presently Singapore’s largest inclusive outdoor adventure facility.
The XLC is designed to allow people of varying abilities to participate in outdoor and adventure learning programmes safely, including the young, the elderly, and persons with disabilities (PWDs). The event was graced by Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Senior Minister and Coordinating Minister for Social Policies, who officiated the opening of the XLC and toured the facility highlights.
With the capacity to host multiple groups of participants at any one time, the XLC will facilitate the training of students from the Diploma in Outdoor & Adventure Learning, as well as those from other relevant Pre-Employment Training (PET) and Continuing Education & Training (CET) programmes in inclusive physical activities, experiential learning and outdoor education.
The new facility will also supplement RP’s existing efforts in developing inclusive outdoor programmes for a wide range of participants, allowing RP staff and students to pilot new approaches and programmes in collaboration with community and industry partners.
Mr Yeo Li Pheow, Principal/CEO, Republic Polytechnic, said, “We are excited to launch the Xperiential Learning Centre today. It is a key milestone in our continuous efforts to chart new learning opportunities for our students. With this integrated multi-use training lab, students can look forward to enhanced curriculum experiences and opportunities for community engagement in the areas of inclusive physical activity, experiential learning and outdoor education.”
State-of-the-art, smart adventure facility
The XLC features 10 adventure facilities and is built using smart building materials, making it weather-proof all year round. An auto-belay system allows some of the activities to be particularly accessible by participants with disabilities. With this system, participants will no longer need a team to assist them in the activities, as the system provides user autonomy without compromising safety.
Participants can challenge themselves with the Rollglider, High and Low Challenge courses, abseil facilities and a Skyscraper Walk.
An artificial caving system and sports climbing walls provide an outdoor ‘nature’ activity experience in a safe and controlled environment. The Circuit Board, a specialised climbing element, consists of a transparent panel allowing two participants to face each other while climbing, enabling participants with disabilities to be guided safely through the climbing route.
Participants with limited mobility, such as wheelchair users, can join in the activities thanks to a winch system in place on many of the facilities. Wheelchair users can therefore take part in activities such as gliding down the Rollglider, traversing across the High Challenge Course and abseiling down the wall facade, making experiential learning and outdoor education more accessible to everyone.
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