Other Recent Articles

Forfar Heights

By my queenstown on Friday, December 4, 2009 with 1 comment

Once upon a time, before modernisation, Queenstown was a swamp, hills, cemeteries and villages. High-rising living flats debuted in Queenstown as fourteen-storey apartment flats at Forfar Heights or "chap si lau chu" in hokkien. These houses are located along Tanglin Halt and Commonwealth Close. Named after a Scottish town, Royal Burgh of Forfar, the childhood town of the present Queen Elizabeth's mother.

From afar, these houses looked like giant pigeon holes that are stacked like concrete boxes. Columns of stairs at either end of the house appeared to be arranged with military precision. Compared to the dirty, unhygienic and crowded squatters located at city fringes, these pigeon holes are extravagant palaces to many Singaporeans.

Today, 40-storey blocks replaced the Forfar Heights along Strathmore Avenue. At the peak of this gigantic structure, a breathtaking landscape weaves through the city skyline and enables one to indulge in reminiscence of the days where residents have to share their kitchens and toilets in a communal environment. As I take the lift up the beautifully built structures, a teasing pain wheezes at my ears. I know I am approaching massive height. As the lift doors glide through the gaps, a panoramic view awaits me. I was dumbstruck by what I see. Am I taller than "Bukit Merah?". I can see IKEA and the brand new BMW showroom in the foreground and those hanging cranes and tankers in the background. Deep in my mind, I know I do not have to suffer the heat and mosquito bites living in attap houses with porous shelter. For a moment, I am in heaven. And this is queenstown-forfar heights, strathmore avenue.

Category: Places



Anonymous said...
July 19, 2013 at 4:16 PM

The blocks that replaced the 14-storey Forfar block are also the first 40-storey HDB blocks I believe.

Post a Comment