Hot: HSBC World Rugby Sevens
Not: Void deck soccer
Sports fans, get ready for rugby fever to hit our shores soon. Happening from Apr 16-17 at the National Stadium, this annual sporting event is on its eighth leg here, with 16 international teams playing 45 matches over two days. While we’re all fired up for the HSBC World Rugby Sevens, putting a dampener on things are barriers installed to discourage void deck soccer. The railings sparked a heated discussion online, with one netizen commenting that it is “now effectively transformed into a dead space”, although the town council’s public relations manager has said the barriers can be removed for weddings and funerals held at the void deck.
From left: Madonna
The Material Girl is no stranger to controversy, and her debut concert in Singapore has (unsurprisingly) drawn the ire of some church leaders in Singapore who reminded their congregations not to support “the ‘pseudo arts’ that promote sensuality, rebellion, disrespect, pornography, contamination of the mind of the young, abusive freedom, individualism at the expense of the common good, vulgarity, lies and half-truths”. Perhaps the brouhaha leading up to her showcase was unfounded, because the pop diva put on what many are calling a watered-down performance to nearly 25,000 fans last night, omitting songs such as “Holy Water” and “Devil Pray”.
Photo credit from left: Christopher Xie, alantankenghoe
Preserving Singapore’s wildlife was a hot topic the last week, with conservation groups like the Nature Society (Singapore) voicing their concerns about the impact of the Cross Island MRT line (which cuts through part of the Central Catchment Reserve) on the area’s biodiversity. In sadder news, parts of a heritage site in Tanjong Pagar will be levelled for the new Prince Edward MRT station. The Palmer House and the remnants of six Parsi graves, which heritage expert Johannes Widodo said was “one of the most important places in the history of early 19th-century Singapore”, are slated to be demolished when construction starts end next year.
Photo credit from left: Satay Night Live, William Notowidagdo
Hot: Car Free Sundays
Not: COE prices
The first Car Free Sunday event saw cyclists, joggers and walkers on the roads and participating in fun outdoor activities such as Zumba, yoga and tennis. And depending on the popularity of the event, there may even be plans to grow the 4.7 km route through Civic District and the Central Business District, which will be closed to vehicles every last Sunday of the month for six months. COE prices have dipped this year for Category A cars (with engines less powerful than 130hp and smaller than 1.6 litres). While it has been reduced by $9,299 to $45,002, the cheapest in nearly five years, it’s still significantly more expensive to own a car in Singapore than elsewhere.