Dezine Zync

The personal blog of Nikhil Nigade

Singapore - The Architecture

As a young adult with minor, manageable health issues, humid places have always been off the radar for me. Especially traveling to countries in South-East Asia for leisure.

But this year in January, I decided it was time to break out of this shell and give it a shot. As this was going to be trial run for me, to check if I am able to survive in that sort of humidity, I chose Singapore as my destination.

Another reason for it: I now have the option for a direct flight to Singapore from my city. Makes things very convenient.

As soon as I got my Tourist card, I was able to hop on to their MRT service and travel throughout the city state. As I did that, one thing became very clear: the country’s love for involving nature in its architecture. I have never seen anything like it before.

Let’s start with the metro stations then. Singapore’s MRT stations are all underground, which goes a long way in preserving the aesthetic beauty of it above the ground (my city has decided to errect pillars above ground for it’s MRT project and it looks absolutely disgusting).

I spotted this cool building plan in one of the stations’s concourse levels:

Architectural plan of a building carved into granite, found at Havelock Station, Singapore

It is carved into the granite stone used on the wall. A very interesting piece to have there, right as you descend down into the concourse level. No flash ad banners here, yet.

When you think Singapore, you may think of this developed nation, with incredible infrastructure, excellent public transport and great food! It’s all of that, but it also reads like a poetic letter between two entities: humans and nature. It’s everywhere around you, and you cannot escape this feeling. It’s obvious, and I love it.

A city high-rise next to the river

Inside the Marina Bay Mall

Louis Vuitton Store

Science & Arts Museum

Science & Arts Museum

Apple Store

The next two are literal gardens, but it advances my point that flora is at the centre of Singapore’s city planning schemes.

Raffles Garden

Somewhere in Singapore

But it isn’t all rosy here, and the brutalist design of the modern times has not let this otherwise beautiful city unscathed.

Finance District as seen from the Marina Bay at sunset

Finance District as seen from the Marina Bay at sunset

It’s incredibly unfortunate that the world’s biggest banks and financial institutions cannot escape this brutalist, seemingly modern and minimalist design to be a better part of their surroundings. Walking through there feels overwhelming when you have been walking around flora all-day. Unescapable, inevitable, but completely unnecessary.