The 143ha site in Tuas occupied by the Raffles Country Club will be acquired for the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail (HSR) project, the Government announced on Wednesday (Jan 4).
The club, one of Singapore's oldest that opened in 1988, will need to hand the site over to the SLA by July 31, 2018 — 10 years before its 30-year lease is due to expire (on Oct 31, 2028). It is the second country club here to have to cease operations because of the HSR, after Jurong Country Club, which has to make way for the terminus in Jurong East.
The Raffles Country Club site — located at Tuas, and bordered by the Tengeh Reservoir and the Ayer Rajah Expressway — was deemed most suitable to run HSR tracks at ground level before it goes underground towards the Jurong East Terminus, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) and Singapore Land Aithority (SLA) said in a joint media briefing. They added that they came to the decision after having "undertaken extensive reviews...to carefully select and consider all options".
The site will also be used for the required HSR crossover tracks and a side track to temporarily house a train near the border for safety or operational reasons, the authorities said.
The plot of land will also be used for the Cross Island Line's western depot, as well as other transport related needs, they added.
There is also the potential of having train testing facilities at the site, although that would be dependant on engineering and feasibility studies.
Compensation will be based on market value for the acquired land as at acquisition date, with the authorities saying they would render as much help as possible to the club. The Government offered Jurong Country Club S$89.8 million for the 67ha site but the club is asking for almost double the amount in compensation.
On why the period of July 31, 2018 was given as the club's move-out date, SLA's chief executive Tan Boon Khai said this was because in the second half of 2018, engineering tests would have to be carried out at the site prior to construction.