Clementi landslide: Channel created in Ulu Pandan Canal to prevent flooding

SINGAPORE – A channel has been carved out overnight in the massive amount of soil displaced into Ulu Pandan canal in an effort to prevent flooding after Friday morning’s landslide at a Clementi Build-To-Order (BTO) construction site.

The landslide affected the part of the Clementi NorthArc site in Clementi Avenue 6 where a retaining wall – which holds back earth or water – was being built, and where a basketball court and pavilion would be located. The authorities have ordered work on this part of the site to be stopped until further notice.

Senior Minister of State for National Development Sim Ann, who is the area’s MP, told reporters that the Housing Board has been coordinating repair and recovery efforts with help from agencies such as PUB, National Parks Board and the Building and Construction Authority. 

Ms Sim, who was at the site on Saturday to observe the ongoing recovery works, added: “We are awaiting further assessment from PUB about the level of flood risk, before any decision will be taken to partially reopen the park connectors.”

When The Straits Times visited the incident site on Saturday morning, water could be seen flowing through the channel. The Ulu Pandan Park Connector was closed along both sides of the canal for slope repair works.

Residents were seen stopping nearby to observe the aftermath of the landslide. 

Ms Sim said a specialised engineer has been engaged to help out with the repair method plan, which is expected to be ready by early next week. 

“Upon submission, the statement will be carefully reviewed by the relevant authorities, and we hope that works on repair and recovery can commence as soon as possible.”

The BTO project was launched in February 2017 with an estimated completion date in the second half of this year.

Ms Sim said concerned home owners due to move into Clementi NorthArc had been informed that there will be no foreseen delays to key collection.

She added: “We will be monitoring this situation very closely. If there are any changes, home owners will be notified.”

One passer-by sustained minor injuries from the incident and was attended to on-site. He is currently recuperating at home.

Mr Roger Croker, who cycles along the Ulu Pandan connector every few weeks, said he has to make some changes to  his usual route.

Said the 60-year-old: “I usually cycle from Holland Village to Pandan Reservoir…but because of this incident, I would need to take a detour, which adds about 15 minutes to my journey.”

Ms Jamilah, a 60-year-old who frequently uses the Ulu Pandan connector, said: “It happened so close to the flats nearby…Thankfully it happened early in the morning, otherwise there might have been more people injured. 

“I am surprised, as I have never seen something like this happen.”