The arrows flew and the nation was treated to some superb archery display, for they seem to hit everybody and everything else except the archer. Finally, their choice of targets exhausted, the arrows made their way back to Stamford Canal. Two months of
Poor Stamford Canal, it was choked in June causing the first Orchard Deluge in many years. Now its design has been found to be wanting, due to the recent weather patterns .... or our rapid pace of development, who knows?
Recently I found out, after 10 years of ignorance, that CityLink Mall actually runs close to and under Stamford Canal. It would be a disaster if the canal sprung a leak (like this clogged pipe in Ion) during a flash flood. CityLink Underwater World, anyone?
Left: Outside Raffles City, part of the mall lies under Stamford Road.
The sobering conclusion that no amount of engineering can prevent flooding reminds me of the days when a little human ingenuity is all that is needed to surmount a water obstacle. I blogged about Raffles Scouts of the 1970s for their effort in building a rope bridge over Stamford Canal. Fast forward 25 years, engineers designed the CityLink passageway to cross the canal, this time under instead of over it, so that the subterranean mall runs under War Memorial Park.
In order to uncover the canal, I spent many weeks at the Beach Road junction outside Raffles City. There, the canal lies underneath the pedestrian walkway with CityLink Mall built even deeper under it. These few Saturdays, there were NDP rehearsals at the Padang so pedestrians got to witness the mobile columns rumbling along Beach Road. The noise must have sounded reassuring to the tragic souls buried under the 'Chopstick Memorial' - finally the nation has a credible defence that will not chabok at the sight of enemy.
Leopard 2A4 Main Battle Tank outside One Raffles Link waiting for the next round of rehearsal.
Many times, my shot was compromised either by the armour vehicles on Beach Road or the pedestrians lining the walkway to view them. The distance and angle were also not very correct, after checking the position of the Raffles Institution building in the background against modern-day Swissotel and Fairmont. Finally on a slightly overcast Sunday, with no tanks and only few pedestrians, I managed the following shot. Enjoy my second shot re-creation of the 1890s photo - Stamford Canal uncovered!