BCA honours ten engineers for their engineering achievements

Thursday, 10 May 2018

- Awards for six Professional Engineers in recognition of their excellence in engineering solutions which led to the safe implementation of their projects; while four others received Merits

Singapore, 10 May 2018 - For their excellent and safe engineering solutions in Singapore's built environment, ten Professional Engineers were recognised in this year's Building and Construction Authority (BCA) Design and Engineering Safety Excellence Awards 2018. Six of them will receive the top honour for overcoming project and site challenges with their resourceful and safe engineering designs and construction.

Commenting on this year's award winners, BCA Group Director (Building Engineering) Engineer Chew Keat Chuan said, "We are commending ten Professional Engineers who have displayed great skill and professionalism in overcoming engineering challenges and bringing their projects to completion safely. Their accomplishments underscore the importance of engineering careers in Singapore and demonstrate good opportunities are available for aspiring Singaporeans who wish to pursue engineering careers in the Built Environment."

Award winner, Engineer Lai Huen Poh from RSP Architects Planners & Engineers (Pte) Ltd was faced with the challenge of not only having to complete the iconic Changi Airport Terminal 4 (T4) in 30 months but also deal with the urgent need to complete part of the 1st and 2nd storey floors within 12 months to allow other subcontractors to start their works to meet the project's deadline. Engineer Lai realised early on that construction productivity would be key for the timely completion of the project and therefore made plans to have most of the T4's structure prefabricated offsite, then transported and assembled onsite.

In addition, Terminal 4's 21 gangways also had to be prefabricated offsite and assembled onsite - two at a time and without any welding works - because they were located just metres away from where aircrafts were parked at the airport. Engineer Lai also worked closely with the project team which suggested and implemented a unique "Hat First" construction method for the main Terminal 4 building. The roof "Hat" was completed ahead of the floors below from the "middle out". This provided a safe and conducive working environment for early commencement of finishing and services works as well as early installation of the airport's Baggage Handling System.

Another engineering feat by Engineer Lai was the use of long steel roof trusses to support the roof of T4's departure halls to meet the design requirements of a visually appealing, column-free hall.

Another two Award winners, Engineers Tan Yoong Heng and Cheryl Lee, were faced with the challenge of constructing the Downtown Line underground tracks under the Singapore River, historical buildings such as the National Museum, through the Fort Canning Hill, and a narrow strip of land between two HDB blocks and the State Court. An added complexity was the need to ensure that underground construction works near Bras Basah did not affect the integrity of three existing MRT lines - the Circle Line, North East Line and North South Line.

A notable engineering feat by Engineers Tan and Lee included the removal of the embankments and temporary diversion of the Singapore River for two years to facilitate of the construction MRT tunnels running from Chinatown to Fort Canning. They also used a 3D modelling and analysis of the historical National Museum's existing foundations to ensure that the construction works would not have an impact on its structure. As a result of their efforts, thousands of Downtown Line commuters now enjoy a safe ten-minute ride between Chinatown, Fort Canning and Bencoolen stations. Their journey would take them safely through tunnels that, at some parts, are less than a metre from the foundations of nearby buildings.

The ten award winners for the Design and Engineering Safety Excellence and Awards will be recognised at the annual BCA Awards Night held on the evening of 22 May 2018 at the Resorts World Sentosa. Minister for Social and Family Development and Second Minister for National Development, Mr. Desmond Lee will be gracing the ceremony as the Guest-of-honour.

Issued by the Building and Construction Authority on 10 May 2018

Portable document format version of the media release is also available (773KB .pdf).

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