Singapore's largest underground substation to be built at Pasir Panjang

Singapore's largest underground substation to be built at Pasir Panjang

Pasir Panjang power station
Overview of the Pasir Panjang Power Station (red brick buildings) and the workers’ quarters (foreground). The Pasir Panjang Power Station was decommissioned in 1987. (File Photo: TODAY)

SINGAPORE: Singapore will build its largest underground substation yet, with the capacity to power more than two public housing towns when completed by 2025. Building the substation underground will free up three hectares - or more than three football fields of space - of land.

SP Group will construct the 230kV underground substation, which will have a commercial development sitting on top of it, on the site of the former Pasir Panjang Power District, said National Development Minister Lawrence Wong on Wednesday (May 30), at the launch of an exhibition showcasing Singapore’s underground projects.

“We are in the process of drawing up plans to rejuvenate the area so that additional space that’s freed up by pushing the substation underground means there are more opportunities for redevelopment,” said Mr Wong. 

“This is just for one substation. And we have many more substations, storage facilities and transport infrastructure all over Singapore. 

"So if you combine all of that, and progressively locate many of these facilities underground, there is tremendous potential for us to start thinking about the possibilities for future developments.”

Singapore underground plans 2
Going underground will free up surface land. (Graphic: URA)

The new development will sit on the same compound as the Pasir Panjang Power Station, which was decommissioned in 1987.


A 3D Underground Master Plan is also being developed by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) and will be unveiled for selected pilot areas by 2019.

The master plan will allow the authorities to plan for both “aboveground and underground possibilities, to ensure that they are compatible and seamless”.

“The map will show what is already there in the ground, what we plan to build in the future, and the regulations and requirements for industry,” said Mr Wong. “All this can be updated whenever things change on the ground.”

He also emphasised that the Government has no plans to build homes underground.

“Some people have asked if we're planning for homes to be located underground in the future. Let me be very clear that we have no intention of putting residential homes underground,” said Mr Wong.

Instead, the master plan’s priority will be to locate supporting infrastructure underground, such as utilities, storage facilities and transport infrastructure. The Government is also “actively looking” to have common services tunnels in growth areas such as the Jurong Lake District, Mr Wong said.

Common service tunnel
The cross section of a Common Services Tunnel. (Photo: URA)


To provide more accurate data to facilitate underground development, a centralised platform collating different types of information for underground planning will also be made available.

Industry players will be able to purchase them from the Singapore Land Authority’s Integrated Land Information Service, which will serve as a one-stop portal for all utility plans.

Geological information collected from government projects will also be shared on the platform from July this year.

Source: CNA/ec(hm)