Participating in the Green Corridor Cycle Series 2016 was a bitter sweet experience as it reminded every cyclist that it may not be possible to enjoy such an experience again, at least not in the near future. Indeed, it is almost impossible to find such a smooth, beautiful, safe, railway theme cycling track anywhere else in Singapore. The entire stretch is surrounded by bushes, tall trees, and lovely flowers.
Participants during the Green Corridor Cycle Series 2016. Photo: Philip Au/ Team Nila
However, the Green Corridor will be closed starting April 2016 for a massive revamp; a 3-year construction project, to construct a water pipeline that draws water from the Murnane Service Reservoir.
History of the Green Corridor
For decades, the Green Corridor served as a transportation line to carry goods and people to and from Singapore. The Green Corridor is a lovely 24km stretch of former rail tracks stretching from Tanjong Pagar Station in the CBD all the way to Woodlands Checkpoint (until 2011 the train from Malaysia ran through here).
The Green Corridor is a lovely 24km stretch of former rail tracks stretching from Tanjong Pagar Station in the CBD all the way to Woodlands Checkpoint. Photo: Philip Au/ Team Nila
The Keretapi Tanah Melayu railway from Malaysia used to have an extension branching out from the Bukit Timah railway station to Shipyard Road and Jurong Port via Teban Gardens. This railway extension was intended for goods transportation and was opened in 1965. It was consequently closed in early 1993 during the electrification project, and has since been dismantled.
A tranquil retreat
What every kilometre along the trail has in common is that they can whisk you away from reality, into a world of discovery and all of them have fantastic opportunities for wildlife viewing and picture taking moments. You can also experience some of the best that our natural playgrounds have to offer, no matter what your activity and skill level.
You have to visit this green land to appreciate its true beauty. The terrain of the corridor is flat, with certain portions that are rugged, muddy and rocky. Indeed, we have a trail for every explorer and you don’t need to trek deep into the wilderness to reconnect with nature when you do some walking along the Green Corridor.
The Green Corridor can whisk you away from reality, into a world of discovery, with fantastic opportunities for wildlife viewing and picture taking moments. Photo: Philip Au/ Team Nila
When it comes to natural landscapes, the path have you covered. From a smooth jogging path scented with the surrounding pine, to breathtaking grassland with steep-sided gorges, we have some of the prettiest landscapes in the country.
Wolf spiders, Common Palmflies, Geometrid Moth Caterpillars, Ichneumon Wasp, Moths, Derbid Bugs, Moth Caterpillars, Assassin Bugs, Wagler's Pit Viper, Boxer Mantis, monitor lizard, pangolin, Wild Fungi, Shroom, etc. are easily been seen everywhere along the track. They will be missed by wildlife lovers and cyclists like myself.
I remember during a cycling trip with my daughter in 2015. Our curiosity was piqued by an odd shape pouch attached on the underside of a leaf. We brought the ready-made cocoon home to see what it was conceiving. At the end of fourteen days, the cocoon unshackled a wasp. Of course, the beautiful Ichneumon Wasp was returned to nature unharmed.
Many participants of the Green Corridor Cycle Series 2016 agreed that the land is one of the only areas that has untouched like a forest – it hasn’t been hit by wildfires. Also, it is an extensive trail that is marked by usage rather than signage. Once in the corridor, riders are rewarded with panoramic views, wildlife sightings and marked by railway elements. There are plateaus of grassland, wooded areas.
The ‘Green Corridor’ was once an uninterrupted stretch of greenery and woodlands that runs the entire length of Singapore. I hope that the new park will be incredible and will achieve its goal of “fostering social bonding and community-building”.
Having said that, the Green Corridor will never be the same though. Goodbye and we will miss you.
This article was contributed by Philip Au, a volunteer with Team Nila