. goodbye Queenstown .

The thought of Queenstown (Singapore) often conjures up images of a sleepy community filled with many old folks. After all, Queenstown was one of the first few housing estate and the first satellite town in Singapore. A quick check on wikipedia showed that this mature estate has 1 of the highest proportion of residents aged 65 yrs and above. In the middle of the town stood a deserted Queenstown Complex (once comprising of a cinema, bowling alley and KTV) in a state of dismal emptiness.

Nevertheless, I was fortunate enough to catch a glimpse of the Queenstown Complex (albeit after its prime) before it stopped operations as my secondary school was located near that district. Back in those days, the complex was buzzing with youths and students who were eager to either bowl or play games and billiard at the LAN Gaming outlet. Unfortunately, the lack of development in the area had forced all its tenants to vacate from the place. In its place now (a decade later) is an abandoned building in a bleak and depressing state. In fact, it was just 2 years back when my colleagues and I used to frequent this place (sometimes, even thrice/week) as our company’s training centre used to be located at this area. Truth to be told, we were never particularly excited about heading over to the Queenstown training centre as the place was really ulu (a term to describe an off-the-beaten-track place). But now that the entire estate will be demolished to make way for new developments, I cannot help but feel a tinge of sadness. Hence, I made MK (my ever accommodating boyfriend!) accompany me on an amateur shutterbug trip to Queenstown to capture still memories and have a look at the area before it gets torn down … for good.

The team at My Queenstown blog did a fantastic job by featuring restricted access information and pictures of the desolated Queenstown Complex. Find out about the glorious history behind the former Queenstown Bowling Alley, Palace KTV and last but not least, the iconic Queenstown Cinema Complex. Venture behind-the-scenes as the team was given private access to enter into the building to capture forgotten memories *click on the links above*!

* This post is specially dedicated to my fellow colleagues: Serene, Wai Mun, Zhennan, Victor & Jingwei ๐Ÿ™‚

These blocks of flats, along with its amenities such as the playground and multi-storey capark, were selected for the government’sย Selective En Bloc Redevelopment Scheme so the entire residential estate is pretty much a ghost town now. The only place that is still inhabited is the Queenstown Community Library that is located behind these flats. The Margaret Drive Hawker Centre, which we used to frequent during lunch time, had also closed its door for good at end Feb 2011. The buildings will soon be gone, and only memories shall remain.

This shop (below) used to provide cheap facial services for only $15!

1 of the oldest NTUC FairPrice (Queenstown) closed its doors on 2nd Feb 2011

Even the POSB ATM machine is no longer in use. Felt a sense of sadness when I was greeted with this sight as it was barely a couple of years ago that the 6 of us had to wait in the queue in order to withdraw $ from this ATM machine.ย 



12 responses to “. goodbye Queenstown .

  1. Queenstown is like my second home to me since I work there! ๐Ÿ˜›

  2. It must have been difficult and emotional to have to say goodbye to a place that you are fond of. I am sorry that Queenstown has to go, but I am glad that you got to say goodbye. Although I have never been there, I am sure many who know the place really appreciate your post, and I do too! Because having to face any kind of change in life could be very difficult. It certainly is for me. Thank you sharing.
    P.S. Your blog inspires me greatly, and thank you so very much for your kind words! I am so encouraged!

    • Hi Anna ๐Ÿ™‚

      You’re welcome! Thanks for dropping me, and it definitely put a smile on my face to read about ur comment. Thanks!

      As much as I welcome changes (after all, what’s life without the constant changes right?) , I think I’m one who will take awhile to get used to it. Part of me understand that old buildings have to go in order to make way for new developments and advancement but also, a part of me wishes to preserve some old buildings that were, once, an important part of our history. an irony, i know.

  3. I used to stay in Commonwealth. Every weekend we will head to Queenstown to visit my mum’s friend working and staying at the hostel in Queenstown Remand Prison as well as head to the community library.

    Its really a pity to see old developments gone to make way for new ones. I wonder in future when Singapore wants to shoot nostalgic films, where can they go to film? It definitely doesn’t feel the same if we use locations like Malaysia.

    • i never knew that you stayed in commonwealth! is the remand prison still there? i dont seem to recall a prison within queenstown but then again, im not that familiar with the area.

      it makes a lot of (economical) sense for people to demolish the old buildings at Queenstown to develop condo as it’s in a prime area. Hence, this translates to alot $$$ because many people out there are willing to pay big bucks for houses in prime distracts. As per my reply to the other comment, I do understand the need for our country to develop and advance but sometimes, i do feel a tinge of sadness that we have to demolish old buildings that were significant in our history. Nonetheless, it’s good that our gov is still making the effort to conserve some old buildings, esp shophouses.

      HAHA. Mediacorp has many fake “old buildings” in their studios for shows lol :p

  4. omg. i’ve seen many photos of these old neighborhood that I must go there already. I particularly love the old school metal mail boxes at the void deck. You can always tell the postman has arrived when you hear the noisy metal clacking sound as he put in the mail.

    I miss my old Potong Pasir neighborhood now. Gotta make my way there soon before PeeEhPee changes everything. ๐Ÿ˜›

    • Yes, you must definitely visit Queenstown sometime soon! I believe that construction will start in the 3rd quarter of the year. And, as we all know, Queenstown will no longer be the old neighbourhood it is now. Instead, there will be more condominiums that are going at sky-rocket prices! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

      Pls do take pics of Potong Pasir and blog about it! I’ll live Potong Pasir through your lens ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. An excellent documentation and photography coverage of Old Queenstown estate, soon, all will be gone forever from SG and into history books, archives, blogs etc etc.

    Growing up and regularly passing by Queenstown estate, remembering the library, bowling and of course delicious food! Many memories will be with me and us into the near future.

    Sometimes, changes are inevitable in land scarce SG, hopefully, your documentation and photographs, along with many others, will help keep the memories of SG alive into the future, for the sake of the future generations!

    Keep shooting & sharing!


    • True indeed. Very soon, Queenstown will no longer be the “mature and old” estate it is now. It will most likely be 1 of the most urbanized neighbourhood dotted with many high-rise buildings. Like you said, changes are inevitable, especially for a country that is progressing at such an amazing speed. I’ll always have a place of the old Queenstown in my heart – the stadium where we used to organize our sports day, the hawker centre with the famous chicken rice stall and my company’s old training centre – and I’m glad to see so many bloggers out there who have decided to take the step to document this place in their blogs. The beauty of modern technology ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Michelle Yao Ao

    Hey..So glad to read your blog about the former Queenstown Cinema Complex..u know, i am a student from Ngee Ann Poly. and i am now doing a project on the ajuvenatition on this old site. It will not take into economical use, just for academic research among us. ummm, your blog really tell a lot about the old scenes of this old and iconic building. actually, our lecturer requires us to do an interview with someone who are familiar with this area, and tries to know more and unravel the stories behind the sorrounding areas. It seems that u know much about this area, and would u like to be interviewed? i am so sorry to bother u, but i really need someone’s help. coz i am an international student and i dun know much about those old towns.

    lols..if u dun mind to take an interview, pls send me a message..my facebook account is Michelle Yao Ao. and my email address is michelle.yao@hotmail.com !!!

    well, my project is a bit urgent. i must finish all the things in this week and supposed to present next week. ummm, if u are not free or u dun want do the interview in person, then how about i send u the questions i wanna ask, then u answer the questions and make a video yourself, then send to me..is it a bit troublesome for u?? ummmm..looking forward to your response..thx!

    • Hi Michelle ๐Ÿ™‚

      Thanks for dropping by my blog and also for your invitation. Am truly honoured although I don’t know if I’ll be of much help. Will drop you an email to follow-up later tonight as I’m still at work. Thanks again for your invitation ๐Ÿ™‚

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s