Category: History

Capping Modern and Tradition: The “Revolutionary” Roof of the Singapore Indoor Stadium


Some have likened it to a traditional Japanese hat. Others see the outlines of a Star Destroyer spaceship from the futuristic movie Star Wars. Without a doubt, the roof of the Singapore Indoor Stadium is one of—if not, the most—distinguishing feature that has made it a familiar icon along the Kallang Basin today.

The design first arose almost forty years ago when Japanese architect Professor Kenzo Tange was appointed by the Singapore government to partner Singapore-based RSP Architects Planners & Engineers to help develop an indoor stadium in 1985. He and his team, including Yasuhiro Ishino and Paul Tange, his son, set about coming with a building that would blend in with its waterfront location then shared with the former National Stadium and other attractions such as the Wonderland Amusement Park and the Oasis Theatre Restaurant Niteclub and Cabaret.

➜ Read the full essay in DOCOMOMO Singapore

Malaysia-Singapore causeway: after 100 years, ‘it’s mutual lah’

The opening ceremony of the Johor-Singapore Causeway on June 28, 1924. Photo: Handout/Courtesy of National Archives of Malaysia
Like many Singapore businessmen, Pui Syn Kong drives to work. But instead of the skyscrapers of Shenton Way in the city state’s central business district, he heads for neighbouring Malaysia.

For the past two decades, the 73-year-old has made the 30km commute from his home in western Singapore to his marine engineering consultancy office in Johor Bahru two to three times a week. He established a presence in the city across the border so he could secure local contracts as a Malaysian company after expanding beyond the island republic.

“I can go over any time straightaway,” said Pui, who usually sets off for work at 6am and returns home in time for dinner. “About 30 minutes and we are there already. Actually, faster than going to Shenton Way!”

➜ Read the full story in the South China Morning Post

Built to last, not on human skulls: Malaysia-Singapore causeway’s 100-year history

The Johor-Singapore causeway as seen from the Woodlands end in the 1940s. A popular legend involving its construction claims human skulls were incorporated into the foundations to appease evil spirits. Photo: Handout

When construction began on the Johor-Singapore Causeway in August 1919, it was the largest engineering project in Malaya, costing an estimated 17 million Straits dollars – roughly the equivalent of US$1.6 billion in modern money.

The design by Messrs Coode, Matthews, Fitzmaurice & Wilson stretched 1.06km from bank to bank and its width of 18.2 metres allowed for two metre-gauge railway tracks, a 7.9-metre roadway and space for the laying of a water pipeline.

➜ Read the full story in the South China Morning Post