The Government has worked with nature and environmental groups to finalise the scope of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the portion of the Cross Island Line (CRL) around the Central Catchment Nature Reserve (CCNR). The EIA tender will be called today.
2 Mr Chew Hock Yong, LTA’s Chief Executive, said, “LTA has been working with the residents and nature groups over the last eight months to address their concerns on the CRL. The nature groups also took time off their busy schedules to put together a CRL working group report. This report, together with the earlier Nature Society Singapore (NSS) position paper, will be included as part of the tender documents and serve as useful resources for the EIA consultant in studying how the various possible alignment options could affect the CCNR. LTA is also mindful that there are other stakeholder groups who may have concerns over the alignment options, and therefore, this EIA study is only one of the inputs that would have to be considered before an eventual decision is made on the alignment of the CRL. We expect to have the EIA consultant on board by the second half of this year.”
3 The EIA will be conducted in two phases for the various alignment options in and around the CCNR. In Phase 1, the Consultant will do a baseline evaluation of the existing ecosystem and the physical conditions along the proposed corridors, and assessments of the potential impact to the environment. The EIA consultant will also propose guidelines and recommend appropriate mitigating measures to carry out the soil investigation works with minimal impact to the CCNR. In phase 2, the consultant will provide an assessment of the impact that may result from the construction and operation of the project.
4 Targeted for completion in 2016, the EIA report will assist the Government in making a considered decision on the CRL alignment. The findings of the EIA will be one of the various factors, including connectivity, travel times, costs and land use compatibility, which the Government will consider when deciding on the eventual alignment of the CRL.
Engineering Feasibility Study
5 Separately, LTA will also call a tender for an engineering feasibility study for the CRL. The study will start in the second half of this year for stretches outside the CCNR. For the CCNR portion, any physical activities such as soil investigation works will only be conducted after the EIA consultant has provided guidelines on how the works should be carried out to minimise impact. The engineering feasibility study is expected to be concluded in 2016.
About the Cross Island Line (CRL)
6 The CRL was announced in January last year as part of the rail infrastructure expansion to improve the connectivity, accessibility and coverage of the rail network and support Singapore’s long-term development. With a more extensive rail network, commuters will have more choices when travelling by public transport. Targeted for completion by 2030, the 50-km CRL will enhance connectivity between the east/north-east and the west of Singapore and provide commuters with an alternative to the current East-West Line. In addition, it will connect to all the other major radial lines to serve as a key transfer line, complementing the role currently fulfilled by the orbital Circle Line. This will relieve the load on several of our existing lines, bringing greater comfort to all commuters and shortening journey times. The CRL is also a critical component of our plans to enable eight in 10 households to be within a 10-minute walk of a train station, by year 2030.