China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) Ltd. has bagged the second phase of construction work for the $2.43-billion Rapid Transit System (RTS) connecting Singapore to neighboring Malaysia. The job involves building a 25-meter high viaduct and tunnels for the RTS link between Singapore and Johar Bahru city of Malaysia at a cost of $135 million. The bridge connects the underground station in Woodlands North in Singapore to the above-ground Bukit Chagar station in Malaysia.

The first contract of the RTS construction work was worth $699 million and went to Penta-Ocean Construction of Japan last November. Penta-Ocean is entrusted with the task of constructing the station, called Woodlands North, on the Singapore portion of RTS, building the Customs and Immigration centre and digging tunnels.  

Singapore and Malaysia are splitting the cost of the total RTS project in the ratio of 61:39. It will result in a short 4-km ride transferring 10,000 commuters per hour between the two countries. 

Malaysia’s transport minister Wee Ka Siong has stated that the RTS Link aims to solve traffic congestion at the causeway between the two countries.

“The journey time is only five minutes,” he said, adding, “During peak hours, we will provide trains (every) 3.6 minutes. You can imagine, it’s less than four minutes we have one train. During non-peak, it’s six minutes.” 

The RTS project involves many stakeholders and requires close coordination. “Beyond this, engineers will have to contend with several construction complexities. To prevent disruption to the navigational sea channels, careful planning will be done for the construction of the bridge over the Straits of Johor,” stated Singapore’s Land Transport Authority (LTA), a part owner of the project.

Ground conditions are expected to be challenging because of the granite geology. Construction will involve the use of high-capacity drilling machines, extended piling works as well as rock demolition during the excavation works. Additional measures such as real-time instrumentation monitoring and rigorous survey checks will be implemented, LTA added.