More than 13,000 food items were raised for Food for the Heart's very first community shop at Mountbatten. The donations will supplied to 500 needy households from the Mountbatten and MacPherson neighbourhoods. At the store, beneficiaries can choose up to 12 items a month from the wide selection which is manned by volunteers.
Food from the Heart (FFTH) is a non-profit charity organization established in February 2003 after Singapore-based Austrian couple Henry and Christine Laimer read an article in The Sunday Times about bakeries discarding their unsold bread. Stirred, they then decided to channel surplus food from bakeries to those in need.
Food from the Heart has since evolved to become a resource bank, taking in non-perishable food items, toys and toiletries besides bread, whilst recycling and rechanneling whatever they can to good use.
As the need for services continue to grow, innovative programmes were added to not just alleviate hunger but also bring joy and hope, touching lives in every possible way.
Changi Airport Group (CAG) has made official announcement that expansion and renovation works at Terminal 2 (T2) will commence after the Chinese New Year holidays, beginning with check-in rows 9 to 12 in the Departure Hall. This marks the beginning of a multi-year expansion project which will increase T2’s handling capacity, as well as to replace facilities and amenities which are nearing the end of their shelf lives.
The expansion project will add 15,500 square metres to the terminal building and increase Changi Airport’s capacity by five million passengers per annum (mppa). This brings Changi’s total capacity to 90 mppa when the works are completed around 2024.
Last refurbished in 2006, the refreshed T2 will sport even more greenery and natural elements at every turn, in keeping with Changi’s signature garden theme in its terminals. There will also be space added in the Departure and Arrival Halls, giving more room to airport operations such as check-in and immigration clearance. Additional retail and F&B outlets will be introduced in both the public and transit areas, providing passengers and visitors with wider and refreshed options. At the same time, passenger touchpoints will be enhanced for a smoother and more seamless experience.
The refurbished T2 Departure Hall will feature a spacious common-use central Fast And Seamless Travel (FAST) zone, with more automated check-in kiosks and bag drop machines. With this, more passengers will be able to use these self-service options to check-in early. Concurrently, the existing rows of check-in counters in the Departure Hall will be transformed to better serve passengers. All in all, the passenger handling capacity in the hall will be increased by as much as 20%.
To facilitate the expansion works, some airlines operating in T2 will be shifted to alternative check-in rows within the terminal during the course of works. The two flight information display flip boards will be retired, with the one between Check-in Rows 9 and 10 to be decommissioned next month.
A duplex F&B concept will be introduced at the north end of T2’s landside leading to Jewel Changi Airport, to provide visitors with a fresh dining experience, while transforming this gateway to Jewel.
In the Departure Transit Hall, the Orchid Garden, which has provided calm reprieve to many passengers with its elegant orchids since 1997, will be closed to make way for a new garden. This new garden will showcase a revolutionary landscape design, incorporating a plethora of new plant species for the enjoyment of passengers when it re-opens.
To cater for more retail and F&B offerings for passengers, the commercial spaces within the Departure Transit Hall will be increased. In particular, the food street areas along the length of the Departure Transit Hall and overlooking the tarmac will undergo refurbishment. Designed to provide passengers with a garden dining experience, this area will incorporate dramatic green walls, hanging plants and soft lighting. More F&B kiosks options will be brought in, along with additional seating and a newly curated tenant mix for an enhanced dining experience.
In addition, all passengers, whether transferring, transiting or departing, can also look forward to refreshed waiting areas with more comfortable seating, relaxation zones and a new play area for children. New experiential zones will be introduced at various locations within the Departure Transit Hall to keep passengers entertained during their time at Changi.
To cater to higher passenger traffic passing through T2, the Departure and Arrival Immigration Halls will be expanded. Specifically, the Immigration Halls will be reconfigured to support additional automated immigration lanes. The Immigration Halls will similarly incorporate lush greenery, extending a warm welcome to our passengers.
To handle a higher volume of bags at T2, two existing baggage belts will be lengthened and another two new belts will be added, bringing the total number of baggage belts to 10. The Early Baggage Storage system will also be upgraded from semi-automated to fully-automated, allowing some 2,300 bags to be stored at any time.
In the Arrival Hall, a garden-like lounge will be created, where meeters and greeters can wait comfortably for their friends and families to arrive.
For the dining outlets in the public area of the airport, McDonald’s in the Arrival Hall will close on 31 January 2020, while Starbucks in the Departure Hall will cease operations in April 2020. The remaining F&B outlets in T2’s public areas will remain open for passengers and visitors until the later phases of the expansion works. With the refurbishment, a new cluster of F&B kiosks will offer additional quick bites options at the south end of the Arrival Hall.
The 43km Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL) is Singapore’s sixth MRT line, adding 32 new stations to the existing rail network, with seven interchange stations linking the TEL to all five existing MRT lines. TEL will open in stages from end of January 2020, starting with the opening of 3 stations which are Woodlands North Station, Woodlands Station and Woodlands South Station. When fully operational by 2024, the TEL is expected to serve approximately 500,000 commuters daily in the initial years, with the figure rising to about one million commuters in the longer term.
Besides enhancing connectivity between the north, central and eastern parts of Singapore, the TEL will strengthen the resilience of the nation's rail network by providing alternative travel routes for commuters on other lines.
The TEL1 comprises one depot at Mandai and three stations, including an interchange station at Woodlands that links to the North-South Line (NSL), providing commuters in Woodlands greater accessibility and shortening their travelling time. Woodlands Station is also equipped with a Civil Defence shelter.
Passengers can look forward to new five-door, four-car trains for TEL. Trains will be running along TEL1 stations from Woodlands North to Woodlands South at frequencies of 10 minutes during peak hours and 15 minutes during off-peak hours, at the commencement of passenger service for TEL1. As ridership on TEL1 increases, the frequencies for both peak and off-peak hours will be reviewed and adjusted.
The second stage of the TEL comprises six stations from Springleaf to Caldecott, with two interchange stations at Bright Hill and Caldecott. Bright Hill station will link to the future Cross Island Line, while Caldecott station will link to the existing Circle Line.
Climate change is anticipated to worsen the spread of mosquito-borne diseases like dengue. It facilitates the spread of mosquito vectors, viruses and epidemics. There is thus a need to continually innovate and design sustainable solutions to deal with these environmental public health challenges. Singapore’s National Environment Agency (NEA) has established a new, highly automated facility that will allow researchers to eventually increase their production capacity of Wolbachia-carrying Aedes aegypti mosquitoes by more than 10-fold, compared to its previous production facility.
This boost in capacity is critical for NEA’s plans to scale up Project Wolbachia – Singapore, in preparation for future deployment of the novel vector control technology. The new facility, located at Techplace II in Ang Mo Kio, was officially opened on 2 December 2019 by Dr. Amy Khor, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources (MEWR).
NEA’s Project Wolbachia involves the release of male Wolbachia-Aedes aegypti mosquitoes to suppress the urban Aedes aegypti mosquito population. Aedes aegypti is the primary vector of dengue, chikungunya and Zika in Singapore. When the released male Wolbachia-Aedes aegypti mosquitoes mate with urban female Aedes aegyptimosquitoes that do not carry Wolbachia, the resulting eggs do not hatch. Over time, continued releases of male Wolbachia-Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are expected to bring about a gradual reduction in the urban Aedes aegypti mosquito population, and hence lower the risk of dengue transmission. Read more about this project here.
Dyson has chosen the iconic St James Power Station to be the address for its new global headquarters in Singapore. The new HQ will include research laboratories and enable the company to double its pool of engineers and scientists in Singapore over the next five years.
Dyson has announced earlier this year that it will be moving its HQ out of the United Kingdom to Asia.
Located near VivoCity, St James Power Station is most remembered as a nightlife hot spot until it ceased operations in September last year. Mapletree will work in partnership with Dyson for restoration of St James Power Station and upgrading of facilities.
City Developments Limited (CDL), CapitaLand Limited (CapitaLand) and Ascott Residence Trust (Ascott Reit) have teamed up to redevelop the Liang Court into an integrated development following the proposed sale by CDL Hospitality Trusts (CDLHT) of its total interest in Novotel Singapore Clarke Quay, subject to the approval of CDLHT’s unitholders at its extraordinary general meetings, to the 50:50 CDL-CapitaLand joint venture entities and CDL. Concurrently, Ascott Reit will sell part of its interest in Somerset Liang Court Singapore2 to CDL.
Subject to approval from the relevant authorities, the proposed integrated development with a total gross floor area of 100,263 sqm will comprise two residential towers offering around 700 apartment units, a commercial component, a hotel and a serviced residence with a hotel licence. Upon completion, the 50:50 CDL-CapitaLand joint venture entities will own the residential and commercial components while Ascott Reit will own the 192-unit serviced residence with a hotel licence. CDLHT will own the hotel, which will have about 460 to 475 rooms4, under a forward purchase agreement with CDL5. The hotel will be operated under the Moxy brand by Marriott International while the serviced residence will retain its Somerset branding. The proposed integrated development is targeted to open in phases from 2024. Read more about this announcement here.
The Ngee Ann Kongsi donated S$50 million to LASALLE College of the Arts – their largest-ever, single donation to date – to develop a new building for the College.
The new 12-storey building will be named The Ngee Ann Kongsi Building. It will be built on a plot of land earmarked for LASALLE, adjacent to the existing campus on McNally Street and connected to Rochor MRT station. The new unified campus is envisioned to have a glass façade that opens into the vibrant thoroughfare of Rochor Canal Road. The announcement of the new building caps off a memorable year for LASALLE, which saw the College receive its second consecutive EduTrust Star, Singapore’s highest mark of quality for a private education institution.
The Ngee Ann Kongsi Building will house an upgraded library to hold a larger collection of books and other arts resources, film and TV studio facilities and a music recital hall that will present free concerts for members of the public. There will be new galleries on the ground floor to reach out to the community as well as specialist and flexible spaces to meet future learning and teaching needs. The public can also look forward to facilities for a wide array of Continuing Education and Training (CET) programmes for professional and personal development.
Q & M Dental Group has opened Singapore's first private dentistry college, offering graduate diploma studies in clinical dentistry. The Q & M College of Dentistry aims to provide a platform for dentists to upgrade their skills and learn best practices in Dentistry, including performing dental procedures with the latest technologies and materials.
They have put in place their own academic and examination board for Q & M College of Dentistry. Their teaching faculty is made up of more than 30 Lecturers of senior General Practitioners and Specialists. Apart from dentists here, the college could also enrol practitioners in Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia, China and Indonesia.