Seeing the unseen – Tengah

Today in Singapore we went to walk around an area that is opened up top public due to the development of a new HDB estate.  The area known as Tengah appears as a green patch on the maps. It used to be a restricted military area and there are still signs marking it as such. Before that it used to house Hong Kah village which was a Christian village from the late 1800s and lasted up top the 1980s when the residents were rehoused. There also used to be a cemetery (which we found evidence of) a brick factory, and a church. Only the stairs leading up to this remain under the leaves. 

There are several beautiful streams cutting through the area and you spots bids attracted there by the various fruit trees. 

The oldest road in Singapore (Jurong road) runs along side. Constructed in the 1850s it connected rural Jurong to the rest of Singapore. It is sill active and there is a bus running along it. 

We found not only evidence of village life in the bricks, pottery and foundations but also evidence of the military in the area. 

While most of the old habitation is gone the presence of the military ironically preserved a lot of the nature. The plans for the housing estate includes a lot of waterways and car free zones but hopefully they also keep some of the old trees as streams rather than a purely landscaped environment. 

3 thoughts on “Seeing the unseen – Tengah

  1. Wow what an incredible place! It’s interesting how these former military areas are now being opened to public. Here in Finland numerous military islands have been opened during the past few years.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Being opened is a bit bittersweet; we got to see the nature and remnants of the villages but the reason it was open is to construct housing on it… The bulldozers have already arrived.


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