Breaking News: School Stadium to Make Way for Expressway

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By Chua Jun Yan (13A01A)

The Year 5–6 stadium and track will be temporarily relocated next year to make way for the North-South Expressway (NSE).

According to Land Transport Authority (LTA) documents, the 21.5 km NSE will include a tunnel passing right under the RI campus. Further investigations have revealed that a ventilation building for the NSE will be built near the junction of Marymount Road and Braddell Road, at the field beside Marymount MRT Station.

A publicly available LTA map from late 2011 which shows the proposed alignment of the new expressway

Based on press releases from the LTA, advance works for the NSE will begin in stages from 2013, with major construction works commencing in 2015. The NSE is projected be completed by 2020, although the exact period of disruption for RI will depend on LTA’s schedule the progress of the project.

As a result, the school will have to close the stadium, field and track next year to make way for constructions works. The sports facilities are expected to be relocated to the field beside the columbarium, Kwong Wai Siew Peck San Theng. This means that sports CCAs and PE classes may have to walk a longer distance to reach the venue for their activities. A new gathering point for emergency evacuations will also have to be found. Fortunately, once construction of the NSE is finished, the facilities will be returned to their present location.

When asked to comment, Mr Ng Kok Ching, Director of Corporate Services in RI, said, “RI is currently working with LTA on the transition… We will be working with LTA and their consultants to establish an interim replacement site for the affected sports facilities soon.”   Mr Ng, whose portfolio includes managing the Estate Office, reassuringly added that his team was working with LTA to ensure that issues such as security, connectivity and entrances at the replacement facilities are properly addressed. However, the precise details are still work in progress.

Nonetheless, future generations of Rafflesians will benefit from the disruption. According to a LTA press release, a trip from Bishan to the city, which currently takes between 15 and 20 minutes, will be slashed to 10 and 15 minutes with the NSE.

Do you have any suggestions to help RI adjust to the transition? Post your thoughts in the Comments section. 

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