Today, we explored the northern end of Lim Chu Kang Road, from the Lim Chu Kang Lane 4 junction to the sea.
This area is as rural as Singapore can be, and compared to much of the rest of the Republic, not much has radically changed since the trunk road was completed in the early 1930s. This area is still largely used for farming, many rural tracks branching off the trunk road still exist (but are unfortunately out of bounds, within the Mindef training area), and the trunk road itself remains a single-lane dual carriageway (albeit paved, painted with road markings, and lit).
We took the opportunity to check out Bahtera Track, which runs west from Lim Chu Kang Road to near the coast. The track is one of Singapore Island’s last unpaved, unlit roads - a great example of how the island’s rural roads were once like. The track is relatively new, though - I guess it was carved out around 20 years ago, to serve the adventure camps facing the sea. Bahtera Track took its name after Jalan Bahtera (“Ark Road”), which is far older; most of the latter has survived development, but lies inside the Mindef training grounds.
Near the sea, there is a large bronze memorial marking the location where the Japanese stormed the beaches on the night of 8 February 1942 - the start of seven days of battle, culminating in the surrender of Singapore on 15 February. A quiet and solemn reminder that this remote, peaceful area was once the site of a bloody struggle between forces battling for the dominance of the Pacific.
The sea itself is not accessible today for security reasons.
From the Bahtera Track junction, we walked north along Lim Chu Kang Road to the sea.
This is Lim Chu Kang’s northernmost bus stop, B01.
It serves just one looping bus service, SMRT Bus Service 975. Buses halt at a bay just short of the stop for around five minutes, which allows the driver to take a pee break. They then make a three-point turn and return where they came from, all the way back to Bukit Panjang Integrated Transport Hub.
A short distance north of Bus Stop B01 is the end of Lim Chu Kang Road. A jetty lies beyond, but it is accessible only to the Coast Guard, and I guess inhabitants of the kelongs on the Straits of Johor.
And here’s a picture of me working hard, thanks to Tiak!
I hope the rural nature of Lim Chu Kang lives on indefinitely. Urban Singapore needs it.