most residents in bukit panjang, including the senior ones who inhabited the place when it was still a village, are unaware that a significant part of their heritage has disappeared forever in the name of development and progress. the structure built in the 1950s was demolished at the end of 2010 to make way for the downtown line's tunnel leading to the gali batu mrt depot. along with this building, the row of shop-houses facing the ten mile junction - to be renamed junction 10 - will also be wiped out from the bukit panjang scene soon.
i have blogged about this place previously. after it ceased operation as a child welfare clinic, it became a children learning centre (kindergarten) operated by the learning ladder.
the bukit panjang child welfare clinic was opened in august 1950. built on land provided by the government and at a cost of $32 000 - the money was raised and contributed by the residents of bukit panjang district - it was hailed as a monument of the communal efforts of the people of bukit panjang.
on 11 september 1951, the straits times reported "the bukit panjang clinic was the only one in singapore which has been built on funds subscribed by the local people".
advice on family planning matters was given at the clinic every friday. though not the largest maternity clinic, it was one of the busiest rural centres seeing between 150 and 200 chinese, malay and indian mothers. in those days, midwives from the clinic would go around the remote areas to help deliver babies.
although i did not grow up in zhenghua village, as a present resident of bukit panjang, i can feel of the loss of this heritage.