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  The Straits Times, Letters to the Forum Page, 28 Jan 05
Preserve scarce countryside

MAY I congratulate the Government on its timely intervention in designating certain stretches of our rural roads as heritage roads. It is always such a pleasure and relief to drive along Singapore's so-called countryside and to discover with joy that in our bustling city state there is still such an abundance of greenery.

However, such euphoria is short-lived when one suddenly comes across a distressing sign, stuck in the midst of such sylvan splendour, announcing a forthcoming auction of a vast tract of vacant land, and to discover that, under the 2003 Master Plan, the whole area is zoned residential, meaning that, in due course, the entire roadside woods will disappear, probably to make way for high-rise condominiums.

While the Singapore Tourism Board is proclaiming to the world the uniqueness of our island, other voices are planning, firstly, a different approach which may threaten to destroy our scarce countryside; secondly, to modernise Orchard Road by converting two carparks and the vacant land above the Orchard MRT station into building sites; and, thirdly, to unnecessarily create a new, ersatz Botanic Gardens in the heart of the city.

Instead of all the above schemes, why don't we develop the Orchard Road sites and our countryside into national parks, resorts and farmlands?

Lee Kip Lee

Heritage road under threat

I AM glad to read that efforts are being made to preserve heritage roads (ST, Jan 26). South Buona Vista Road, highlighted in the article, is a lusciously scenic road enjoyed by both joggers and drivers. Unfortunately, buildings are already cropping up on either side of the road, marring the rustic beauty.

Seah Kar Heng

Related articles on Heritage Trees of Singapore

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