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  1. #7498
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Subordinate Courts take top honour at Global Performance Excellence Awards



    Singapore's Subordinate Courts. Photo: Reuters


    Courts are only recipient of World Class Award in non-profit category this year


    TODAY

    1 hour 1 min ago

    SINGAPORE — The Subordinate Courts have won the highest honour at the Global Performance Excellence Awards (GPEA) conferred by the Asia Pacific Quality Organisation (APQO)

    The Subordinate Courts are the only recipient of the World Class Award in the Not-for-Profit category this year.

    The World Class Award, modelled after the United States Malcolm Baldridge Award, is only open to organisations that have won their National Quality Awards in the last three years. The Subordinate Courts was awarded the Singapore Quality Award by SPRING Singapore in 2006, and built on that success to attain the Singapore Quality Award with Special Commendation in 2011.

    The GPEA prize presentation will be held on Sunday (Oct 6) in Bali, Indonesia, as part of the 19th Asia Pacific Quality Conference.

    Mr Tan Siong Thye, former Chief District Judge of the Subordinate Courts, will represent the Subordinate Courts to receive the award. He will also deliver a speech at the conference, titled “Strategy & Approaches for Quality & Productivity Innovation, the Subordinate Courts Experience”.

    “The GPEA marks another important milestone in the organisational excellence journey of the Subordinate Courts. The award reiterates their commitment to excellence in the administration of justice as the Subordinate Courts continually strive to better serve the Singapore society by delivering quality justice for all,”
    the courts said in a press statement this morning.

    APOQ is a non-profit organisation founded by National Quality Organisations in Asian and Pacific Rim countries in 1985

  2. #7499
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Ilo Ilo wins four more awards

    Movies





    Ilo Ilo director Anthony Chen with the awards won by the film in Hungary. Source: Objectifs


    And local director Anthony Chen is predictably astounded

    TODAY

    By Genevieve Sarah Loh
    22 September


    SINGAPORE — Anthony Chen’s Ilo Ilo does Singapore proud once again as it continued its festival-winning streak. This time, the film swept three major awards at the 10th Jameson CineFest Miskolc International Festival in Hungary, and captured the Best Actor award at the 9th Eurasia Film Festival in Kazakhstan.

    With Director Chen in attendance, Ilo Ilo bagged the Grand Jury prize, the FIPRESCI (International Federation of Film Critics) prize and the International Ecumenical Jury prize at the Jameson CineFest, Hungary’s leading film festival. With its haul of wins, Ilo Ilo became the festival’s most awarded film.

    The Cannes Film Festival Camera d’Or winning film beat Hollywood heavyweights competing in the International Category — notably Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s directorial debut Don Jon, starring Julianne Moore and Scarlett Johansson, as well as Margin Call director JC Chandor’s All Is Lost, starring Robert Redford.

    “The three prizes in Hungary were awarded by separate juries and they all told me how they were moved and impressed by the film,” Chen told TODAY via telephone while waiting for his London-bound plane at the Hungary airport. “There is indeed this universal quality about our very Singaporean film that really transcends cultures and borders, that has astounded even me.”

    The panel, which awarded the Grand Jury prize (also known as The Adolph Zukor prize), praised Ilo Ilo “for the extraordinary performances of an ensemble cast, supporting a highly cinematic vision of loneliness among family members in the heart of contemporary metropolis”.

    The FIPRESCI award is given out at many prestigious film festivals including Cannes, Toronto and Venice. It rewards what the international association of professional film critics and film journalists see as enterprising film making.

    At the 9th international film festival Eurasia, first time child actor Koh Jia Ler won the Best Actor award. Oscar and Palme d’Or winner Jane Campion headed a jury that included award-winning Filipino film director Brillante Mendoza.

    Said Chen: “Of course I am so proud of Jia Ler, he was selected out of thousands and worked really hard, particularly for someone who had no acting experience at all; it was nice that he was given a real pat on the shoulder.”

    Coming right off the back of their recent triumph at Russia’s Pacific Meridian Film Festival last week, this winning streak bodes extremely well for the local film as it continues in its bid to become the first Singaporean film to be nominated for (and possibly win) an Oscar.

    The intimate family drama which also stars Chen Tian Wen and Yeo Yann Yann plays next at the Pusan International Film Festival next month.

    Ilo Ilo is in cinemas now.

  3. #7500
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Ilo Ilo clinches 6 major Golden Horse nominations



    (From left) Ilo Ilo stars Chen Tianwen, Koh Jia Ler and Yeo Yann Yann with director Anthony Chen. All four were nominated for the Golden Horse awards. Photo: Fisheye Pictures

    By Genevieve Sarah Loh
    01 October


    SINGAPORE — Fresh from winning a string of awards at last month’s film festivals in Russia and Hungary, Singapore film Ilo Ilo could be in line for more honours — this time at Taiwan’s Golden Horse Awards, dubbed the Oscars of Chinese-language cinema.

    Director Anthony Chen’s multiple award-winning intimate family drama has emerged as one of the front-runners for the awards, clinching a total of six major nominations, including for Best Film, Best New Director and Best Original Screenplay.

    Also nominated are Chen Tianwen for Best Supporting Actor, Yeo Yann Yann for Best Supporting Actress and first-time child actor Koh Jia Ler for Best Newcomer.

    “Oh my goodness! Six nominations! I’m melting, gasping and catching my breath. I can’t believe it,” Mr Chen, 29, told TODAY over the phone immediately after the nominations were announced live on YouTube and Twitter at 5pm yesterday by festival Chairman Hou Hsiao-Hsien.

    “This is a massive achievement for Singapore!”
    said an excited Mr Chen, a Cannes Camera d’Or winner. “I was thinking it will be nice to have two or three nominations, but this has really astounded me. It’s a real gift to the cast and crew and everyone.”

    Taiwan’s very owntwo-time Oscar winner Lee Ang is chairing the jury at this special 50th Golden Horse Awards.

    Asked how he felt to have Mr Lee, his idol, chair the jury which nominated Ilo Ilo, Mr Chen said: “Just the idea of him seeing my film puts a smile on my face.”

    With its haul of six nods, Ilo Ilo has the highest nominations ever for a Singapore film that is fully funded locally in the history of the Golden Horse awards — compared to Mr Jack Neo’s The Best Bet, which garnered a Best Original Film Song nomination in 2004, and Mr Royston Tan’s 881, which was nominated for the Best Styling and Best Costume awards in 2007.

    The Home Song Stories, which was produced by Singapore’s MediaCorp Raintree Pictures and Australia’s Film Finance Corporation, received seven nominations, including Best Film, in 2007 — but it was a Singapore-Australia co-production.

    The film ended up winning two — Best Actress for Ms Joan Chen and Best Original Screenplay for Mr Tony Ayres.

    And if 12-year-old Koh, a Best Actor winner at the recent 9th Eurasia Film Festival in Kazakhstan, were to be named Best New Peformer, he would be following in the footsteps of Megan Zheng, who became the first Singaporean to win a Golden Horse award in 2003 when she was 10.

    With a Best Film nominee list that boasts the creme de la creme of Asian cinema, Mr Chen can expect tough competition.

    His Ilo Ilo is up against The Grandmaster by the inimitable Wong Kar Wai; Drug War by last year’s Golden Horse Best Director winner Johnnie To; A Touch Of Sin by the critically lauded Jia Zhengke; and Stray Dogs by celebrated Malaysian-born director Tsai Ming-liang.

    It has been a festival-winning streak for Singapore’s arguably most-decorated film, which kicked off with Mr Chen’s historic Camera d’Or win at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

    With the six Golden Horse nods, Ilo Ilo is well on its way to making history once again as it continues its bid to become the first Singapore film to be nominated for — and possibly win — that elusive Oscar.

    The winners will be announced on Nov 23 at the Dr Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hall in Taipei.
    The awards ceremony will be broadcast live by TTV (Taiwan Television Enterprise).

  4. #7501
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    Default NUS launches degree course to beef up pool of audiologists

    • By Sara Grosse

      6 hours 17 min ago
      SINGAPORE — With the Republic facing a growing demand in hearing-related services, the National University of Singapore (NUS) has launched a Master of Science in Audiology course to beef up the number of locally-trained audiologists.

      Audiologists work with ear, nose and throat doctors to evaluate hearing and ear-related balance disorders, fit hearing aids and assistive learning devices as well as middle and cochlear inner ear implants.

      Singapore currently has only 60 audiologists — who received their training overseas — in the public and private sectors.

      The two-year programme started in August, with 18 students in its pioneer batch, at the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine.

      Siemens Medical Instruments has donated S$19.5 million to help fund the programme over eight years

      Health Minister Gan Kim Yong, who was at the official launch of the programme yesterday, noted that as the population ages, the manpower pool for audiologists needs to be grown to meet healthcare needs.
      The National Health Survey in 2010 found that one in five Singaporeans between 50 and 59 years old, and one in four between 60 and 69, suffer from some degree of hearing impairment.

  5. #7502
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Three buildings in Queenstown to be conserved



    Alexandra Hospital once served the medical needs of the British armed forces. TODAY file photo


    By Saifulbahri Ismail
    6 hours 16 min ago

    SINGAPORE — Queenstown Public Library, the former Commonwealth Avenue Wet Market and Alexandra Hospital will be conserved as part of the coming Urban Redevelopment Authority’s (URA) master plan, Acting Minister for Manpower Tan Chuan-Jin announced yesterday.

    Speaking at the URA Architectural Heritage Awards, he said these three buildings in Queenstown are “important representations of what conservation can do to reinforce a community’s identity and preserve its ‘flavour’ for past, present and future residents”.

    The conservation of Queenstown library, which is Singapore’s first branch library and is used by many of the area’s residents, will ensure its longevity as a community touchstone and gathering place, noted Mr Tan.

    The same goes for the former Commonwealth Avenue Wet Market — the only remaining market built by the Singapore Improvement Trust; the Housing and Development Board’s predecessor — which remains a marker of important changes. It was the first to house itinerant hawkers to serve the suburban public housing estates.

    Alexandra Hospital has also been a stage to significant scenes from Singapore’s history, said the minister.

    At various times, it served the medical needs of the British armed forces, was overrun by Japanese troops, and it was also where the first successful limb re-attachment in South-east Asia was performed, he pointed out.

    The three buildings in Queenstown that will be conserved follow three others in the town that have already been conserved: Princess House, the Blessed Sacrament Church and Anchor Brewery.

    Mr Tan also noted that while conservation is important in reflecting the nation’s growth, social history and memories, it is “rarely a cut-and-dried process”. “We require your continued support, as we work together to build a consensus on the legacy we want to create through the conservation of our built heritage,” he said. “Conservation is never just for one person’s advantage — when done well, its benefits ripple to the surrounding community and beyond.”

  6. #7503
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default BreadTalk officially opens $67 million international headquarters in Tai Seng

    Published on Oct 04, 2013
    10:25 AM






    • http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...oto%205e_0.jpg
      BreadTalk staff at the Toast Production room and baking facilities located in the Central Kitchen on Level 6. BreadTalk's international headquarters officially opened on Oct 4, 2013. -- ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN




      http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...oto%203e_0.jpg
      Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam (extreme right), accompanied by BreadTalk Group chairman Dr George Quek (foreground, second from right), as he smells freshly-baked bread from the Toast Production room located within the Central Kitchen on Level 6. BreadTalk's international headquarters officially opened on Oct 4, 2013. -- ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN



      http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...oto%202e_0.jpg
      Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam goes on a media tour in the Frozen Dough department located at the Central Kitchen on Level 6 during the opening of BreadTalk's international headquarters at Tai Seng Street on Oct 4, 2013. -- ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN



      http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...oto%201e_0.jpg
      Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam (fourth from right) opens BreadTalk's $67 million international headquarters at Tai Seng Street on Oct 4, 2013. Also in the photo are (from second right) Ms Katherine Lee, Dr George Quek, Mrs Shanmugaratnam, Mr Oh Eng Lock, and Dr Tan Khee Giap at the ribbon-cutting ceremony in front of the BreadTalk headquarters. -- ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN



      http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st.../28285478e.jpg
      (From left) Ramen Play, Food Republic, Toast Box and BreadTalk on level one of BreadTalk's international headquarters building in Tai Seng. BreadTalk officially opened its $67 million international headquarters at Tai Seng Street on Oct 4, 2013. -- ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM



      http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st.../28285485e.jpg
      The new international headquarters of BreadTalk in Tai Seng on June 13, 2013. BreadTalk officially opened its $67 million international headquarters at Tai Seng Street on Oct 4, 2013. -- ST FILE PHOTO: KEVIN LIM


      By Chia Yan Min

      Food and beverage group BreadTalk officially opened its $67 million international headquarters at Tai Seng Street on Friday.

      The building houses the group's corporate office, research and development laboratories, training academy, warehousing facilities and central kitchens.

      The architecture of the 10-storey building was inspired by Danish pastry, the group said.

      BreadTalk plans to hit sales of $1 billion by 2016 and have more than 2,000 outlets across its businesses by 2018.

  7. #7504
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Always, Singaporean first



    As a cosmopolitan society, we should capitalise on being able to live amid a very diverse population. TODAY file photo


    By Laletha Nithiyanandan
    4 hours 30 min ago

    Twenty years ago, I, a Singaporean of Indian descent, married an Englishman and we chose to build a life in this city. So it was with a mix of amusement and disappointment that I read just recently about a study that found, among other things, that Singaporeans aren’t yet comfortable with a spouse of another race.

    I have been following the dialogue about racial harmony in Singapore all my adult life.


    As a female entrepreneur of a minority race, I am often asked about the repercussion of discrimination on my business. And while I have sometimes spoken about being discriminated as a woman, I have never spoken about being discriminated as a Singaporean of Indian descent because I feel ashamed to talk about it.

    This is because I believe in the Singapore I grew up in.

    It was one where we played in each other’s homes and ate each other’s food; where neighbours would send food to your house if they were making something special; where people just turn up at someone’s house for their new year because it was about community.

    We never missed the opportunity to eat rendang on Hari Raya or chicken curry on Deepavali, and my favourite was those delectable love letters during Chinese New Year. The best part? We received hongbaos at every festival.

    I see myself as a Singaporean first and whenever I introduce myself to others outside Singapore, I add that a true Singaporean has a bit of Malay, Indian, Chinese and Eurasian in them. It’s not about descent or blood line but about the fact that we embrace each other’s culture.

    And most times, this is my experience of Singaporeans.

    A DIFFERENT GENERATION?

    A lot of this, I know, is owed to my parents. This was a generation that survived war and the Japanese Occupation. My dad didn’t tell us many stories of the war but I remember the one story he did share — of how he helped a young Chinese woman escape a Japanese soldier and seek refuge in his home by posing as her husband.

    This is the Singapore I yearn for now, when I read about the findings of the recent survey on the state of racial harmony by OnePeople.sg and the Institute of Policy Studies.

    Growing up, my grandmother would dress us in ethnic Chinese clothes to carry lanterns around the neighbourhood during the lantern festival. No one saw us differently. In today’s world, would that have been quite a funny sight, two dark girls in Chinese silk pyjamas carrying lanterns?

    My parents took us to every place of worship. I remember going to the temple near Kim Keat Road and the turtles there. They took us to the church at Novena and they took us to Muslim shrines, Buddhist and Indian temples.

    We didn’t just visit, we had to pray and I think something happens when you can understand someone else’s faith — it suddenly breaks down the differences between you and someone else.

    When I became a professional recruiter later, it added a dimension that was invaluable. It helped me understand others around me and what was important to them.

    Has something of that been lost today? When I celebrated the lantern festival with my own children, we were pointed at and giggled at. And the kids, embarrassed, didn’t want to do it again. But, still, we try celebrating everything from Chinese New Year to Christmas.

    COSMOPOLITAN CITIZENS

    We have managed, I think, to “engineer” citizens who are more racially unaware, and that’s shame on us. But the good news is that if we can create something, we can also un-create it. And it starts with each one of us as individuals, how we want our children to grow up and fit into this rapidly globalising world.

    When my daughter was born, a friend commented on how mixed-race children don’t belong anywhere. “They’ll be nothing,” she said. I laughed and said I think they’d be everything. I called them “planetary citizens”, and said it at the time with tongue planted firmly in cheek. But there is some truth to it.

    As a cosmopolitan society, we have the rare gift of being able to live amid a very diverse population and we should capitalise on that. The Government can do its part to update policies or campaigns that appear to create divisiveness, as some other commentators have argued, but as citizens we can do our part to educate one person at a time.

    Many times , people come into my home and when I greet them, they express surprise that I am Indian because they thought it was a Chinese home based on the décor
    . This presents just one of many opportunities for me to educate the people I come in contact with — that we aren’t races, we are people.

    We don’t always have control over how people view us. They may persist in putting us in boxes and stereotype us by just by a glance. But we can also choose the “box” we want to be put in, and in my case I decided long ago that mine was going to be a big one filled with rich experiences.

    What about you? What do you want your world to look like and who will your children marry?

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

    Laletha Nithiyanandan is the founder of the Behavioural Consulting Group

  8. #7505
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Land Transport Masterplan: Peak hour public transport mode share back up

    Published on Oct 07, 2013
    10:21 AM




    MRT commuters at Raffles Place station on June 24 2013. More people are opting to take public transport during the peak hours with the public transport mode share hitting 63 per cent, up from the 59 per cent in 2008. This however is still lower than the mode share of 67 per cent in 1997. -- ST FILE PHOTO: ALPHONSUS CHERN



    More people are opting to take public transport during the peak hours with the public transport mode share hitting 63 per cent, up from the 59 per cent in 2008. This however is still lower than the mode share of 67 per cent in 1997.


    Transport Minister Lui Tuck Yew announced this on Monday, while launching a refreshed land Transport Masterplan. He said that the Government made good progress in its last masterplan in 2008 and had raised the quality of public transport to attract new users.

    The public transport mode share was captured in the latest Household Interview Travel Survey (HITS) 2012 conducted by the Land Transport Authority (LTA) between June 2012 and May 2013. A total of about 10,000 households participated in the survey.

    As a whole, the survey also found that there was a 14 per cent increase in trips made on public transport as a whole, with strong growth in train trips from 1.7 million daily train trips in 2008 to 2.3 million in 2012.

    Daily bus trips also grew, from 3.1 million trips in 2008 to 3.2 million in 2012.


    The survey also captured an increase in the rate of public transport usage from 65 per cent in 2008 to 71 per cent in 2012, for those already living close to an MRT station.

  9. #7506
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Loh View Post


    As a cosmopolitan society, we should capitalise on being able to live amid a very diverse population. TODAY file photo


    By Laletha Nithiyanandan
    4 hours 30 min ago

    Twenty years ago, I, a Singaporean of Indian descent, married an Englishman and we chose to build a life in this city. So it was with a mix of amusement and disappointment that I read just recently about a study that found, among other things, that Singaporeans aren’t yet comfortable with a spouse of another race.

    I have been following the dialogue about racial harmony in Singapore all my adult life.


    As a female entrepreneur of a minority race, I am often asked about the repercussion of discrimination on my business. And while I have sometimes spoken about being discriminated as a woman, I have never spoken about being discriminated as a Singaporean of Indian descent because I feel ashamed to talk about it.

    This is because I believe in the Singapore I grew up in.

    It was one where we played in each other’s homes and ate each other’s food; where neighbours would send food to your house if they were making something special; where people just turn up at someone’s house for their new year because it was about community.

    We never missed the opportunity to eat rendang on Hari Raya or chicken curry on Deepavali, and my favourite was those delectable love letters during Chinese New Year. The best part? We received hongbaos at every festival.

    I see myself as a Singaporean first and whenever I introduce myself to others outside Singapore, I add that a true Singaporean has a bit of Malay, Indian, Chinese and Eurasian in them. It’s not about descent or blood line but about the fact that we embrace each other’s culture.

    And most times, this is my experience of Singaporeans.

    A DIFFERENT GENERATION?

    A lot of this, I know, is owed to my parents. This was a generation that survived war and the Japanese Occupation. My dad didn’t tell us many stories of the war but I remember the one story he did share — of how he helped a young Chinese woman escape a Japanese soldier and seek refuge in his home by posing as her husband.

    This is the Singapore I yearn for now, when I read about the findings of the recent survey on the state of racial harmony by OnePeople.sg and the Institute of Policy Studies.

    Growing up, my grandmother would dress us in ethnic Chinese clothes to carry lanterns around the neighbourhood during the lantern festival. No one saw us differently. In today’s world, would that have been quite a funny sight, two dark girls in Chinese silk pyjamas carrying lanterns?

    My parents took us to every place of worship. I remember going to the temple near Kim Keat Road and the turtles there. They took us to the church at Novena and they took us to Muslim shrines, Buddhist and Indian temples.

    We didn’t just visit, we had to pray and I think something happens when you can understand someone else’s faith — it suddenly breaks down the differences between you and someone else.

    When I became a professional recruiter later, it added a dimension that was invaluable. It helped me understand others around me and what was important to them.

    Has something of that been lost today? When I celebrated the lantern festival with my own children, we were pointed at and giggled at. And the kids, embarrassed, didn’t want to do it again. But, still, we try celebrating everything from Chinese New Year to Christmas.

    COSMOPOLITAN CITIZENS

    We have managed, I think, to “engineer” citizens who are more racially unaware, and that’s shame on us. But the good news is that if we can create something, we can also un-create it. And it starts with each one of us as individuals, how we want our children to grow up and fit into this rapidly globalising world.

    When my daughter was born, a friend commented on how mixed-race children don’t belong anywhere. “They’ll be nothing,” she said. I laughed and said I think they’d be everything. I called them “planetary citizens”, and said it at the time with tongue planted firmly in cheek. But there is some truth to it.

    As a cosmopolitan society, we have the rare gift of being able to live amid a very diverse population and we should capitalise on that. The Government can do its part to update policies or campaigns that appear to create divisiveness, as some other commentators have argued, but as citizens we can do our part to educate one person at a time.

    Many times , people come into my home and when I greet them, they express surprise that I am Indian because they thought it was a Chinese home based on the décor
    . This presents just one of many opportunities for me to educate the people I come in contact with — that we aren’t races, we are people.

    We don’t always have control over how people view us. They may persist in putting us in boxes and stereotype us by just by a glance. But we can also choose the “box” we want to be put in, and in my case I decided long ago that mine was going to be a big one filled with rich experiences.

    What about you? What do you want your world to look like and who will your children marry?

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

    Laletha Nithiyanandan is the founder of the Behavioural Consulting Group

    Thus, I argue that the newspapers should not state the ethnic origin of students who get outstanding academic results in their reporting as one example.

  10. #7507
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    Default Land Transport Masterplan: Downtown Line Stage 1 to open on Dec 22

    Published on Oct 07, 2013
    9:57 AM



    The interior of the new Downtown Line trains, which are fully automatic and driverless. The reserved seats are in red to highlight the fact that they are meant for passengers with special needs. The first stage of the Downtown Line will open on Dec 22, providing commuters with more connections to get around the city centre. -- FILE PHOTO: JOYCE FANG


    By Royston Sim

    The first stage of the Downtown Line will open on Dec 22, providing commuters with more connections to get around the city centre.

    Transport Minister Lui Tuck Yew announced the opening date as he unveiled the Land Transport Masterplan 2013 - a refreshed version of the plan that was last set out in 2008.

    The first stage of the Downtown Line will see six stations open for service, including Chinatown. These stations will link with three other MRT lines - the Circle Line, North East Line and East-West Line - enhancing connectivity in the city area. The second stage of the 42km line is due to open in 2016, and the third stage in 2017.

    Mr Lui was speaking at the opening ceremony of the inaugural Singapore International Transport Congress and Exhibition, which is jointly organized by the Land Transport Authority and International Association of Public Transport (UITP).

  11. #7508
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    Default First MRT stations equipped with flood barriers

    Published on Oct 07, 2013
    8:05 AM


    By Royston Sim


    With storms likely to occur more often in future, the authorities have started equipping MRT stations with flood barriers.

    The first six have been retrofitted at a cost of $2.2 million, with barriers similar to those used in Hong Kong's MTR stations. Design works for another 11 stations are ongoing, said a Land Transport Authority (LTA) spokesman.

    The first batch of stations - Tanjong Pagar, Orchard, Raffles Place, City Hall, Novena and Little India - were selected as they are more vulnerable to flooding, said SMRT director for media and marketing communications Alina Boey.

    In its Code of Practice on surface water drainage, national water agency PUB states that the underground rapid transit system must be "stringently protected against flood risks".













    Workers (above) showing how the barriers at Tanjong Pagar MRT station take two people up to 15 minutes to install. The first six stations were chosen as they are more vulnerable to flooding. -- ST PHOTO: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN

    - ST PHOTOS: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN

  12. #7509
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Cheung View Post
    Thus, I argue that the newspapers should not state the ethnic origin of students who get outstanding academic results in their reporting as one example.
    As you probably have read, our MOE, under the direction of a new Minister for Education, is now initiating changes not only to our education system to allow for more diversity and inclusiveness, but also in the way academic performance and grades are reported. This is an attempt to avoid any hint of discrimination and elitism among schools and our various races.

    In real live, it is unavoidable that the vernacular papers will single out outstanding academic or non-academic performances by the various races. In a way this is to encourage achievement by the various ethnic groups. However I guess reporting of this nature will be more subdued in the future.

    To provide for a more level playing field, MOE has publicly announced that primary schools will allocate at least 40 places in "elite" schools for pupils whose parents have no previous connection. This is to prevent "old-school elitist ties" from expanding and enable children from lower social groups to be admitted.

    Not that our neighbourhood schools are no good. Increasingly they have produced a fair share of scholars who have won Public Service Scholarships and even the prestigious President Scholarship.

    Having said this, the intention of the government is to encourage achievement to the highest degree but also to provide opportunities for children who may not be as academically endowed so that they can also achieve the best they can. This also hopes to level-up children from lower income social groups.

    Laletha Nithiyanadan is an excellent model for all Singaporeans. But to reach her stage of "enlightenment" will not be easy for many. Hopefully through our continually revised school education system and curriculum, our children will learn to visualize that skin colour is not everything and that thought and action in deeds are more important. I can see our education system evolving in that direction and this is a cause for hope and silent happiness!

  13. #7510
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default ‘I can’t believe I’ve done it’

    Sports





    Pole vaulter Sean Lim (pictured) set a national record of 4.83m at the 2013 Singapore Under-23 Open Track and Field Champioship on Oct 6 and, in the process, also qualified for the upcoming Dec 11-22 SEA Games in Myanmar. Photo: Sean Lim




    Pole vaulter Sean Lim’s mark of 4.83m also meant he qualified for the coming SEA Games in Myanmar. Photo: Terry Tan Lee Ban


    Pole vaulter Sean Lim sets national mark despite hardly training due to NS



    By Gerard Wong
    8 hours 8 min ago

    SINGAPORE — It was only his second competitive meet this season, and he entered it having hardly trained because of his National Service (NS) commitments.

    But despite training just once a week for the past four months, pole vaulter Sean Lim, 20, managed to set a national record at the 3rd Singapore Under-23 Open Track and Field Championships at the Choa Chu Kang Stadium yesterday.


    Under the blazing sun, Lim hoisted himself 4.83m into the air to erase the previous benchmark of 4.82m set last April by training mate Chan Sheng Yao at the National Schools Track and Field Championships.

    Benjamin Lim was second (4.40m), with Aaron Koh third (4m).

    Sean Lim’s result also cleared the 4.70m qualifying mark for this December’s South-east Asian (SEA) Games in Myanmar, which means Singapore could have two pole vaulters at the regional meet as Sheng Yao, 18, has also qualified.


    His record-breaking feat was still sinking in for Lim, a signaller who completes his NS in December, when TODAY contacted him.

    “I’m still trying to figure out how I did it,” said the former Hwa Chong Institution student who also set the national mark of 4.81m back in 2011.

    “After I entered the army, I wasn’t able to train for a year and a half. I only resumed four months ago, and even then, it’s been once a week.

    “So I wasn’t expecting a national record today. Funny thing was, David Yeo, my coach, felt I could do it, and that gave me confidence.”


    After failing in his first two attempts, Lim finally cleared the bar on his third, although he brushed it on the way down.

    Yeo said he always knew his trainee could do it because he had already mastered his vaulting technique before enlisting for NS. “He cleared 4.40m at last month’s Track and Field Series 6, which was his first meet since entering NS,” said Yeo, who has been Lim’s coach since 2007.

    “So it was just a case of pointing out to him what areas to fix, such as his run-up and his take-off. As I watched him warming up today, I already knew he could do it.”

    Lim now wants to go to Myanmar to erase bitter memories of his last SEA Games outing four years ago in Laos. He said: “I tore my hamstring on my first attempt, and that was the end,” he said. “I want to put that behind me once and for all.”

    Meanwhile, Amirudin Jamal clocked 10.67 to edge out Calvin Kang (10.69) in the men’s 100m final yesterday to clinch the second slot reserved for Singapore at the SEA Games.
    As the national 4x100m men’s relay team already qualified for the SEA Games, it means two members from the squad can also compete in the 100m. Gary Yeo took the first berth when he clocked 10.44 at the ASEAN University Games last December, which was faster than the SEA Games qualifying time of 10.47.

  14. #7511
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Lim-Prasad breaks 29-year-old 200m record

    Sports





    Dipna Lim-Prasad in Women 4 X 400m during 75th Singapore Open Track and Field Championship 2013. Photo: Wee Teck Hean


    She pips Shanti Pereira in thrilling battle at U-23 S’pore Open C’ship


    By Gerard Wong
    05 October


    SINGAPORE – Dipna Lim-Prasad added yet another national record to her collection when she smashed one of Singapore athletics’ oldest national marks this afternoon (Oct 5).

    The 22-year-old Nanyang Technological University student - who already holds the national 100m hurdles and 400m hurdles records - rewrote Prema Govindan’s 29-year-old national 200m mark of 24.54sec, when she clocked 24.36sec at the 3rd Singapore U-23 Open Track and Field Championships.

    Teen talent and national 100m record holder Shanti Pereira, 17, had been tipped to be the one to finally break Govindan’s record, which was set in 1984, after she had equalled the time at last July’s IAAF World Youth Championships.

    But this afternoon, in a thrilling neck-to-neck battle on the Choa Chu Kang Stadium tarmac which had all the spectators in the stands on their feet, it was Lim-Prasad who pipped Shanti at the tape to take both the gold and the honour of becoming the first woman in almost three decades to break the 200m mark.

    Shanti finished with the silver in 24.56sec, just 0.02sec shy of the record, and 0.2sec behind Lim-Prasad. Tyra Ree Summer was third in 26.39sec.

    Lim-Prasad told TODAY that she did not go into today’s final expecting to break the record.

    “Actually, my recent training times have been quite promising but I never enter an event expecting to break a record,” confided the Singapore Sports School (SSP) alumnus.

    “There is always the worry of not being able to replicate training times in a competition setting,” she said.

    “So, yes, I am really happy, and I hope this spells promising times ahead for the 400m and 400m hurdles.”

    Lim-Prasad’s coach Viatcheslav Vassiliev said he was pleased with his protege’s performance but noted areas for improvement. Said the Georgian who also coaches at the SSP: “Dipna had a very good start and came out of the curve very strongly.

    “But she was leaning back towards the end so that’s an area we will need to work on and improve.”

    Despite missing out on the 200m record, Shanti, 16, was pleased with her timing and performance.

    The Republic Polytechnic student also paid tribute to Lim-Prasad who was once her senior at SSP: “Running against Dipna is always a scary experience because she is one of the top athletes in Singapore.

    “She gave me the motivation to run even faster today. I am quite happy with my result as I managed to run faster in the final than in the heats.”

  15. #7512
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Singapore Sports Hub wins world architecture award



    Artist impression of Singapore Sports Hub. Photo: Singapore Sports Hub


    Upcoming Sports Hub beat six other projects, including hotels and resorts across the globe



    05 October

    SINGAPORE — The Singapore Sports Hub has won the World Architecture Festival (WAF) Award for Best Future Project in the leisure-led development category.

    The award was given out at this year’s festival, held at Marina Bay Sands from Oct 2- to Oct 4.

    The Sports Hub was one of seven projects across the globe to be shortlisted for the award.

    The other projects include resort, hotel, summer home and market place developments in Australia, India, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia and Turkey. CHANNEL NEWSASIA

  16. #7513
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    Default Strong showing from S’pore in World Architectural Fest shortlist

    Design





    Kaiseki Yoshiyuki designed by Asylum




    PARKROYAL On Pickering by WOHA.




    The Star Performing Arts Centre by Aedas




    Horse's Mouth designed by Asylum



    Could more of our buildings and interiors join the architectural honour roll call this year?


    By Serene Lim
    05 July


    SINGAPORE — Singapore buildings and interiors are standing tall and proud these days.
    Last week, PARKROYAL On Pickering was named as a joint winner for Hotel of the Year at the annual World Architecture News Awards.

    The WOHA-designed hotel, which opened early this year, has already stirred up excitement among design and architectural buffs worldwide with its striking façade and green credentials. It has also been featured in countless spreads and photos in magazines and the web sphere.

    The hotel shared the honour with luxury boutique hotel Raas in Jodhpur, India, and judges for the awards of the influential global resource centre for architecture have been effusive in their praise.

    Larry Traxler, Senior Vice President of Global Design at Hilton, referred to it as “a new typology in sustainable hotel design”. It’s also been described as “a masterpiece” by Dr Lin Hao, a director of multi-disciplinary firm, Oval Partnership.

    It’s the first international architecture-based award for PARKROYAL On Pickering, but it might not be the only one.

    The hotel is also a shortlisted awards nominee both for the World Architectural Festival (WAF) and its interior design offshoot Inside Festival. The WAF is the largest festival for the global architecture community and is set to return to Marina Bay Sands in October.

    But PARKROYAL On Pickering isn’t the only Singapore building on the radar. The WAF shortlist also included The Star Performing Arts Centre, Kent Vale Faculty Housing and Marina Bay Cruise Centre, as well as several churches like Bethel Assembly Of God in Geylang East Central and a handful of private residences.

    Meanwhile, designphase dba’s Zafferano restaurant in Ocean Financial Centre, and Asylum’s Kaiseki Yoshiyuki and Horse’s Mouth at Forum The Shopping Mall were also nominated in the bars and restaurants category of the Inside Awards.

    It’s going to be a tough contest for the Singapore nominees for the WAF. O
    ther nominees include Zaha Hadid’s Heydar Aliyev Centre in Azerbaijan, TeamMinus’ Jinamani visitor centre in Tibet, Mecanoo’s Kaap Skil Maritime And Beachcombers Museum in the Netherlands, Wingardh Arkitektkontor AB’s Empora in Sweden and 3XN’s The Blue Planet in Denmark.

    Still, Singapore buildings are no pushovers. Last year, the conservatories of Gardens By The Bay took top honours as WAF’s World Building Of The Year.

    Could back-to-back wins be in the works?

    For the shortlists for World Architectural Festival and Inside Awards, visit www.worldarchitecturefestival.com
    Last edited by Loh; 10-07-2013 at 12:13 AM.

  17. #7514
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Loh View Post
    As you probably have read, our MOE, under the direction of a new Minister for Education, is now initiating changes not only to our education system to allow for more diversity and inclusiveness, but also in the way academic performance and grades are reported. This is an attempt to avoid any hint of discrimination and elitism among schools and our various races.

    In real live, it is unavoidable that the vernacular papers will single out outstanding academic or non-academic performances by the various races. In a way this is to encourage achievement by the various ethnic groups. However I guess reporting of this nature will be more subdued in the future.

    To provide for a more level playing field, MOE has publicly announced that primary schools will allocate at least 40 places in "elite" schools for pupils whose parents have no previous connection. This is to prevent "old-school elitist ties" from expanding and enable children from lower social groups to be admitted.

    Not that our neighbourhood schools are no good. Increasingly they have produced a fair share of scholars who have won Public Service Scholarships and even the prestigious President Scholarship.

    Having said this, the intention of the government is to encourage achievement to the highest degree but also to provide opportunities for children who may not be as academically endowed so that they can also achieve the best they can. This also hopes to level-up children from lower income social groups.

    Laletha Nithiyanadan is an excellent model for all Singaporeans. But to reach her stage of "enlightenment" will not be easy for many. Hopefully through our continually revised school education system and curriculum, our children will learn to visualize that skin colour is not everything and that thought and action in deeds are more important. I can see our education system evolving in that direction and this is a cause for hope and silent happiness!
    I would have thought it's better to admit those who can reach the required academic standard but who do not have the socioeconomic means to enter the school. One has to be careful about trying to "pull up students" - the risk is that they drop out of the school due to poorer results - especially in Singapore's pressure cooker style. Thus the point of the whole exercise in balancing acts is lost. I know that many of the children undergo extra tuition outside of school. Something that lower socioeconomic groups have less access to.

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