SINGAPORE: A company that caused an uproar with Sengkang residents in 2015, over plans to build a commercial columbarium near housing estates at Fernvale Link, will be opening a new columbarium in March 2019.
Called GoldHill Memorial Centre, the new columbarium will be fully automated and will use technology to optimise its space. It is a pilot project by Australian company Life Corporation, which owns Eternal Pure Land (EPL) - the firm at the centre of the Sengkang saga.
When Channel NewsAsia visited the site on Sunday (Apr 1), construction works had commenced.
Located along Tampines Road, north of Paya Lebar Air Base, the small plot of land was granted to Life Corporation by the government in 2015 as part of a deal to terminate the agreement to build a Chinese temple in Fernvale Link.
The decision to terminate the agreement in 2015 came after a public outcry over EPL's plans to build a commercial columbarium within the temple, as well as the discovery that the company had no religious affiliation.
Following the termination of the agreement, the site was re-awarded to Thye Hua Kuan Moral Society (THKMS) through another tender process.
THKMS has said previously that the temple will not have a columbarium or any facilities for urns. Instead, it will have a Hall of Filial Piety where families can place a tablet of their dearly departed, with a DVD showing snapshots of the person's life.