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Thomson-East Coast line to add MRT station at Founders' Memorial in Marina Bay

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The Founders' Memorial will be located at a 5ha site in Bay East Garden in the Marina Bay area.

THE Thomson-East Coast MRT line (TEL) will have an additional stop between Tanjong Rhu and Gardens by the Bay stations, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) announced on Monday.

The Founders' Memorial station will be named after and situated next to a 5 hectare memorial being built to showcase the contributions of modern Singapore's founders. Both are scheduled to open in 2025.

Engineering provisions for an MRT station had already been put in place - in anticipation of future developments in the area - but the station was not announced earlier because plans for the memorial were confirmed only in 2017.

The LTA said that China Railway First Group has been awarded a S$242.4 million contract to build the station, and construction work will start later this year.

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While the Marina stretch of Thomson-East Coast Line will open in 2021, the Founder's Memorial station will open four years later, "in tandem with the opening of Founder's Memorial", the LTA said.

It was reported last year that the memorial site will be housed in a garden, within which an indoor gallery will be built. There will likely be permanent and temporary galleries, as well as a visitor centre and multi-purpose rooms which could host school excursions and citizenship ceremonies.

The memorial will cover the period in Singapore after World War II to its first few decades of independence, focusing on stories about and key milestones in the country's growth.

Separately, the LTA announced a breakthrough with the Katong Park station along the TEL, which brings the final stage of the TEL to around 40 per cent completion.

Because of the narrow site constraints - a two-lane road measuring 6 metres wide flanked by high-rises and at least one pre-war house - the LTA said Katong Park will have a stacked station configuration. That is, it will have one station built on top of another, as opposed to being parallel to each other.

While stacked stations are uncommon, though not unique to Katong Park, the LTA said it was the first time that tunnel-boring machines were used to construct them.

The method required the lower station (and tunnels) to be built first, before the one above can be built. This requires additional time.

After tunnelling is done, the station sites are then excavated. On Monday, Senior Minister of State for Transport Janil Puthucheary took the wheel of an excavator equipped with a jackhammer to break through a tunnel segment where the upper station will be built.

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