Not scrap metal, but a bridge to the past

June 27, 2011 by  
Filed under News

Letter to TODAY by Liew Kai Khiun, 22 Jun 2011.

For the past fortnight, along with Singaporeans from all walks of life, I have been joining the walks along the Malayan Railway tracks organised by the “We support the Green Corridor” group, comprising conservationists and nature experts who are promoting awareness of the need to conserve the line between Tanjong Pagar and Woodlands as a green lung, after it ceases operation at the end of the month.

Aside from the stretches of lush greenery along the train line, many visitors have been tremendously fascinated by the engineering structures. These include the levers in the control room of the Bukit Timah Station, the train tracks and the cast-iron Truss bridges on Dunearn Road and Railway Mall on the main line, and the smaller counterparts at Sungei Ulu Pandan and Sunset Way along the defunct Jurong-Bukit Timah line.

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Source: TODAY

NSS’s Letter for a 6 month moratorium

June 24, 2011 by  
Filed under News

Ref: SLA’s Tender for Removal and Storage of Railway including ancillary structures from Woodlands Train Checkpoint to Tanjong Pagar Railway Station, which was awarded on 2 Jun 2011.

Nature Society (Singapore) has already send letters to the relevant authorities to seek a 6 month moratorium commencing 1 July 2011 for the above work.

NSS asked that any dismantling works of the KTM tracks and ancillary structures be deferred during these 6 months except for reasons of safety.

NSS requested that the public be allowed to venture and explore the entire railway land and suggested that the authority should take the opportunity during this 6 months moratorium to garner feedbacks and conduct consultations to find out how the public would like the railway land to be used.

As the Singaporean public has been kept out of the KTM railway land for decades during the tenure of KTM, NSS thinks that this would be a once in a lifetime chance for the public to see the railway land as it is with its railway tracks, structures, bridges etc all intact.

Organised walk can be conducted by local or even KTM staff on the railway.

This would make for a fabulous and educational trip on our shared heritage as the railway has been a historical landmark of Singapore.

The railway has been with us for many decades – relatively an additional six months is a very short amount of time.

Source: NSS

The Green Corridor Forum [14 May]

May 9, 2011 by  
Filed under Events

Saturday, 14 May, 2.00pm – 4.00pm, level 16, POD, National Library

The ‘Green Corridor’ forum is a public discussion on the idea of converting the Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM) railway track literally into a “green corridor”, free of urban re-development plans once the land parcel is handed over to Singapore on 1 July 2011. This includes reasons why Singapore should protect the natural biodiversity already existing along the railway tracks as well as the community benefits that it brings.

The discussion is led by the Nature Society of Singapore and is joined by established local writers including Madeleine Lee, Suchen Christine Lim & South African writer, Melissa de Villiers.

Participants of ‘Bear Fruit: Railway Memories’ will also be presenting their works based on their memories of the Malayan railway.

About the Speakers

Dr Ho Hua Chew is currently the Chairman of the Conservation Committee in the Nature Society of Singapore. He co-ordinates conservation activities of the Society, such as the formulation of conservation proposals, feedback to government land-use & development plans, biodiversity surveys, etc. He has been doing conservation work for the Nature Society for more than a decade, in the course of which he was involved in the formulation of the conservation plan for Sungei Buloh, the Master Plan for the Conservation of Nature in Singapore, the Society’s EIA pertaining to the government’s golf course at Lower Pierce, etc.

His main field of expertise is bird life and biodiversity conservation, for which he has obtained a great deal of field experience in Singapore and Malaysia, and formal training from Imperial College and the University of East Anglia. He also lectures part-time on Environmental Ethics as well as on Biodiversity Conservation at tertiary institutions.

Tham Wai Hon’s interest in the Green Corridor sprang from his final year thesis at NUS Architecture School in 2006-it questioned the future of Malayan Railway Land. Wai Hon has worked in the fields of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, and is currently working on the National ArtGallery, Singapore at studio Milou Singapore.

Neu Wa O’Neill has previously worked on issues of biodiversity and connectivity with the Wildlands Project in Montana and Colorado in the U.S.A., mapping areas of roadless wilderness and habitat for endangered species. Neu-Wa has a BA in Urban Planning from the University of Hawaii and a Master’s in Architecture from the University of Toronto, and currently works as an architecture associate in Singapore.

This forum is open to the public.

Registration is required at the NLB website.

Source: National Library Board

Don’t cut a road across the green corridor

April 5, 2011 by  
Filed under News

Straits Times Forum, 8 Mar 11.

THE eagerness with which we want to make life easy for motorists is a narrow paradigm (‘Faber residents squawk over road plan’; last Wednesday).

The Land Transport Authority must design the city for people and not for cars. Perhaps traffic can be eased if we made it easier for people to cycle and walk, which is what the Nature Society (Singapore)’s plan for the green corridor envisions: a 40km stretch for eco-friendly and less carbon-intensive passage.

The corridor could become an iconic regional attraction, which can be propped up by an economic model that earns revenue. It would also preserve our ecology and heritage for generations – a real winner for all.

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Source: Straits Times via Wildsingapore

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