Sunday, April 05, 2009

Kampong Buangkok, Last Village in Singapore - WS


Singapore is a high-tech city with a population of 4.8 million living on a total land area slightly more than 600 square kilometres. In land scarce Singapore, many live in high-rise buildings.

Only a handful of people in Singapore know that one kampong (village) still remains. But Kampong Buangkok has been designated for demolition and redevelopment by the government. Under Singapore law, the government can buy the land at any time, at a designated price.

well-kept village houses

On an area the size of three football fields stand 28 houses. Some of the metal-roofed, one-story wooden houses may be old and run-down but they are well-kept.

A neat backyard and dining area


An abandoned well in the middle of a clearing, rumoured to be haunted

I grew up in a kampong. All the neighbours knew one other. Whenever there was a wedding or a death in the village, everyone came to help. We could count on one another. We never had to lock our doors because when there is a stranger in the kampong, we knew.

A brand new wooden house standing amidst the older ones.

There were a couple of newly completed wooden houses. I have no idea if the owners will get to live in them.





First Commenter - Lina

63 comments:

  1. I sometimes miss the kampung ways of living. :)

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  2. Lina,
    I doubt I'll be able to live in a kampung .... but I do enjoy the few days of kampung life whenever I stay with my Aunt in Pontian, JB.

    The villagers are so warm.

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  3. stan,
    Go visit soon... it will be demolished.

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  4. What a beautiful place and I am sad it will be gone. Does not seem fair.

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  5. Designated price meaning whatever price offered by the government? Or is it the market value?

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  6. heidi,
    Yes, it is a beautiful place. The present owner has been living here since 1950s, soon she will have to leave....

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  7. Doreen,
    In this case, it's market price. Lucky for the owner!

    She was offered huge sums of money by private developers but she refused to sell. But now she has no choice.

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  8. Alamak, ECL, you are ahead of me leh.. cos tot of going to Lorong Buangkok these days to capture our last vestige of Kampong!

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  9. sg short stories,
    You can still go... different people have different perspectives of this kampong. Your post might be more interesting. ;)

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  10. Thank you for such a terrific blog and interesting topics.
    I will now be following this blog.
    Please follow mine at
    http://www.healthnharmonygrenfell.blogspot.com/
    Thank you.
    Christine Convery

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  11. Neat! I really have no idea that there's still a kampong in Singapore!

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  12. Wah so cool la Singapore got kampung oso!

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  13. I really like the blue and white house, looks so quaint and cozy!

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  14. Enjoy the rest of ur weekend sweetie. Dropped EC here today! :)

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  15. That's interesting. Thanks for the information..:)

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  16. So the Govt has really decided to tear the kampong down afterall.I saw a docu about it on the Net and I thought there was some hope for the few dwellers there.Progress has no pity or feelings alas.I'm always sad when S'pore loses parts of its heritage and tradition often due to housing projects.I can understand but the pill is difficult to swallow.
    Hope you had a nice Sunday ECL!

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  17. I wish there was some directions on how to get there. I have been reading many blog articles by fellow Yesterday.sg bloggers and I still can't quite get how to get there by public transport (bus and MRT) @_@

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  18. Do you think it will still be there in August, or will it be gone by then? No way I can get to Singapore before then so I wonder whether I will get to see it.

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  19. hi ECL! this is the last kampong in singapore?

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  20. It appears to be a silent and peaceful village! Away from all the busy life....I'll choose that!

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  21. Population of 4.8 million?
    Wow..I thought it's lesser.. I guess that was a few years ago when I last checked.. Anyway, went to this village a few months ago.. I didn't get to see some of the houses you posted here.. Maybe I didn't cover the area properly.. Hmm...

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  22. Which kampong did u stay? I stayed in Lim Chu Kang previously...Really miss those days...

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  23. Hi Christine Convery,
    Thanks for your visit and following my blog. :)

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  24. waiting kitty,
    This is the last one and soon will be gone too. :(

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  25. Mariuca,
    In the future, if Singaporeans want to see a kampong, must go over to Malaysia. This last kampong will be demolished for redevelopment.

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  26. jean,
    It's inevitable.

    There will not be enough land to accommodate new citizens as the Government is actively pushing towards a 6.5 million population in Singapore.

    My elderly neighbour who owns an old bungalow (more than 60 years old, his ancestral house) was told in his face when he refused to sell to a developer, "You are an obstacle to modernisation. Standing in the way of progress and development. This house should be torn down."

    The house may be old but it is well maintained and is home to the family. It was passed down from his father and 4 generations have lived in it. There is sentimental values.

    As Singapore progresses, more and more heritage and traditions will be lost.

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  27. oceanskies,
    I'll email you the directions. Not so difficult to find. :)

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  28. Rachel Cotterill,
    You're coming to Singapore? I'll check it up for you, it probably will still be there in August.

    I saw a couple of Americans at the villager when I was there. They came specially to take pictures after reading about it.

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  29. Monica,
    Yes, the last kampong and vanishing soon....

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  30. Mirage,
    It is hidden in trees, away from the busy city life. It is peaceful and quiet in this village. The elderly villagers were watching TV programmes, napping or going about their chores around their houses.

    Many houses stand empty. The occupants have moved.

    This would be a nice place for retirement. :)

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  31. cashmere,
    The 2 new houses were completed recently. But they would probably not be lived in.

    We are going towards a population of more than 6 million in the near future. So you should see figure rising each year.

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  32. Dora,
    I stayed in Kampong Cheng San. Yes, I missed those days and the helpful neighbours. Many of them were old and have passed away, I attended their funerals.

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  33. omg! I hope the government doesn't demolish the kampong! It's part of heritage!

    I kind of grew up in a kampong and I loved that it helped shape who I am today.

    Singapore children should be able to visit the kampong and see how a close knit society live.

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  34. It really sad when one being told to leave their homes...

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  35. very informative post, thanks for sharing it to us, continue your work, have a nice day!

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  36. Hmmm, it's a pity that this village is the last one standing, and probably won't be for long judging from what you say. I don't comment on other countries' affaris usually but I really wonder how far the --- government will go in the name of development, and just how far will they push your country's population.

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  37. Maybe Singapore should build more land on the sea like what they did in Dubai?

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  38. Do you have a road where I can refer to to check out that nice area?

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  39. dieselfire,
    The decision is final.

    Singaporeans and their kids can only see and experience a kampong life in Malaysia in future. My young nieces and nephews have no idea what a kampong is. :(

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  40. LEon,
    ... especially when the home was where you were born and grew up.

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  41. Thank you, your health assistant for stopping by.

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  42. JL,
    This last kampong is set to go.

    Older buildings in Singapore are also going for en bloc.

    The Singapore Government is working hard towards achieving the target of 6.5 million population. It will do everything it can. Citizens have no say. :)

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  43. foongpc,
    We are reclaiming land. It's too costly to build land on the sea, our country is not as wealthy as Dubai.

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  44. stan,
    Try Yio Chi Kang Rd near the junction of Ang Mo Kio Ave 5, then Gerald Drive.

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  45. That's really an interesting info, ECL! Have a blessed week!

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  46. that is so sad to hear about going to demolish and all. old ways are are much nicer than the present cause makes you feel so at home.

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  47. since i live in a low rise house, i often wish am staying in a high rise building. The highest i lived at was a 7th floor week-end and my bedroom was up in the 7th and i feel like am very much above the world. lol!

    I hope this place will be preserved.

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  48. This was an interesting look into the village. Looks very pleasant.

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  49. Nice photos and write up of Kampong Lorong Buangkok !

    I must plan to visit there soon before it goes down into history books .....

    JH
    http://www.photojournalist-tgh.tv

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  50. We still have those. I remember when I was younger, I would ask my mom to allow me to spend my summer vacations with relatives. ;)

    Happy WS!

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  51. It seems sad that the people have no choice but to give up their homes but it must be for the benefit of the majority. I hope those people will have no problem relocating.

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  52. BTW, thanks for visiting my PH entry. I didn't make the zebra clip. I just bought it at the mall.

    Have a nice day.

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  53. i do hope the Singapore govt would reconsider preserving some of the kampongs for the future generation to see and appreciate their heritage.

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  54. How sad! I'm glad to read that it's at least is to market price. Phew.

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  55. can i ask some questions on the kampong?
    how many houses are there in the kampong and are all of them occupied? and what is the tradition of the kampong? for eg, making those tradional kueh.
    thanks!

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