Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Passing of an era - The Railway Girder Bridge at Hillview.

So it has finally come to pass. The day that I thought I would never see the light of.
After more than 80 years, the Malaysian railway line has been dismantled and with it the freeing up of the bottleneck at Hillview Road.

I wrote a blog back in Nov 2010 about this bottleneck just after Singapore and Malaysia came to an agreement to remove the KTM railway line from Singapore. (Link here)

The traffic bottleneck at Hillview Road.

Yesterday, while online with another ex-resident, Mr SK Yum, of the now demolished Princess Elizabeth Estate, I learnt that the railway bridge was dismantled that very day we were chatting.  So I missed the opportunity to document a historic moment when the bridge was taken down.

The bottleneck will soon be a thing of the past, much to the joy of all the residents of Hillview and Bukit Batok, as well as for motorists who use that stretch.

I am not sure when the bridge was built but when my parents moved into Princess Elizabeth Estate in 1953,  it was already there. So it must be at least 60 years.

Back in 1953, when Princess Elizabeth Estate was built, the road was the only access from Upper Bukit Timah Road to the estate. It remained the only access road in, until the early 1970s when Hillview Avenue was extended and connected to Jurong Road at the other end.

Soon the old girder bridge will just be a part of people's memory, when they remember that there used to be a bridge at Hillview Road.

The Hillview Bridge with the railway line on top.
This was taken in July during the 'open' period for visitors after the train services ended.

Hillview Road with the bridge dismantled. 26 Nov 2011.

The concrete beam still across is a height warning and collision barrier. Soon to be dismantled as well.  

postscript: 12 Dec 2011
The collision barrier has been removed. Photo taken on 12 Dec 2011.

All that's remaining is the height warning gantry, which ironically has become the obstruction itself!

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  1. hi James, do u remember the small prata shop jus opposite the std charted bank? My dad used to bring me there where i hv my prata plus magnolia bottled drinks.

    1. Yes, the 2 Indian shops located across Hillview Road from Chartered Bank has been mentioned a number of times else in other articles in my blog. Do search through the blog for memories about it.

  2. hhchiam@gmail.comJune 28, 2018

    I grew up in Jalan Dermawan & went to PEES. Been to the Std Chartered Bank numerous times as a kid & always remember the big Sikh security guard with turban & a shotgun. Used to scare the sh*t out of me. Mother was of no comfort as she always warn that if I was naughty, the "Bangali" man will catch me ! The bank's tagline of "Big, Strong & friendly" was of no comfort !