Saving forests may uproot residents instead

Like other nature lovers, Dr Chua Ee Kiam has made a strong case against the new MRT line cutting through the MacRitchie forests ("Lessons to be learnt from construction of BKE"; yesterday).

Nature lovers fear the irreversible loss of many precious species of flora and fauna and the irreparable damage to the natural environment.

Dr Chua urges the authorities to abandon the idea of cutting through the forests and work on a line that skirts Thomson Road instead.

This alternative route will save the forests and their denizens.

But a thought must be spared for the people living along Thomson Road whose homes might be acquired for the development and who might be displaced.

The Government might compensate them according to market rates, but the emotional cost is heavy, especially for those who have lived there all their lives, like me.

My three children grew up there, so did my four grandchildren.

Where can we find another place like home and the good friends we have made through the years?

Moving house is a traumatic experience.

It cannot be measured in dollars and cents.

Anthony Oei

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 18, 2016, with the headline 'Saving forests may uproot residents instead'. Print Edition | Subscribe