SINGAPORE - From Changi Airport Terminal 5 to Tuas Port, Singapore is pushing on with key infrastructure projects, as the Republic emerges from the Covid-19 pandemic.
In his National Day Rally speech on Sunday (Aug 21), PM Lee Hsien Loong said this will send a clear signal to the world that Singapore is charging ahead.
He also spoke about the new town that will be built in Paya Lebar after Paya Lebar Air Base is relocated to Changi in the 2030s.
Here is what PM Lee said about the three developments.
1. On Changi Airport's T5
"When completed in the mid-2030s, T5 will show the world what sort of place Singapore is."
PM Lee revealed some of the new features of Changi Airport's T5, after the design was reviewed during the pandemic.
He showed a video of T5, which showed a brief preview of a journey in T5 - from touchdown at the terminal to taking the skytrain to collecting baggage.
He said T5 will allow operations to be quickly scaled up and down amid a pandemic, and that passengers from different flights can be prevented from mixing.
The Ministry of Transport said on Sunday that the terminal can be split into smaller sub-terminals when the need arises. There will also be spaces that can be converted into testing or quarantine zones in future pandemics.
Passenger touchpoints will be contactless.
The terminal will support the use of cleaner alternative fuels such as sustainable aviation fuel made from biofeed.
2. On Tuas Port
"We will have the world's largest fully automated port, and that should make us a leading global player in the maritime space."
PM Lee said Tuas Port is already "up and running", with two berths currently open.
In about 20 years, all container operations in Singapore's four other terminals - Tanjong Pagar, Keppel, Brani and Pasir Panjang - will be consolidated at Tuas, which will by then have a capacity of 65 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), doubling Singapore's current capacity.
PM Lee said all container operations at Tanjong Pagar terminal have already moved to Tuas Port. With Tuas Port's contributions last year, Singapore handled a record high of 37.5 million TEUs of cargo.
With the land reclamation in phase one of Tuas Port's development now completed, phase two, three and four of the $20 billion project will follow, he said.
The Transport Ministry said on Sunday that another three berths at Tuas Port will open by year end, bringing the total number of berths in operation there to five.
3. On the new town to be built in Paya Lebar
"Over decades, we can completely reimagine the eastern part of Singapore."
PM Lee said an estimated 150,000 new homes - both public and private - can be built in the new town in Paya Lebar after the relocation of the military airbase in the 2030s. This is roughly the size of Punggol and Sengkang.
The 3.8km runway can be repurposed to become the town's central spine - as a green connector or community space - and be turned into a distinctive and attractive heritage feature, he added.
The town can also be aligned along the runway, which is orientated in the direction of prevailing winds for aircraft to take off and land without any crosswinds. This would make the town naturally breezy, so residents will not need much air-conditioning, he said.
PM Lee said the airbase moving out could also lead to the redevelopment of neighbouring towns in Hougang, Marine Parade and Punggol, as building height restrictions around the area would be lifted.
"Paya Lebar is just one example of how we are reimagining and transforming Singapore," he said. "We are doing this all across the island - Jurong Lake District, Greater Southern Waterfront and many other areas too."