Chang Airport’s Terminal 5 has been redesigned to make it more “resilient” and can operate more flexibly and safely in case pandemics return, says Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the National Day Rally on Aug 21.
The tender of T5, which is designed to handle more than 50 million passengers a year – more than Terminals 1, 2 and 3 combined – was about to be called when the pandemic hit in early 2020.
During the impending two years, the planners have gone back to the drawing board and designed T5 to be able to scale operations up and down more easily, and to isolate passengers from different flights to limit cross infection.
Lee says that the long-term prospects for air travel remains bright. With most borders re-opened, people are travelling again and passenger traffic at Changi has already exceeded half of pre-Covid levels.
“In the longer term, air travel will keep growing because of a fast-expanding middle class in our region,” he adds.
Lee says that T5 will be made greener and more energy-efficient. “When completed in the mid-2030s, T5 will show the world what sort of place Singapore is,” says Lee.
Besides T5, there’s the Changi East Urban District development, described by Lee as a new “business and lifestyle destination”, creating more jobs and opportunities for Singaporeans.
Artists' impression of T5 / Credit: Changi Airport Group
“Catch up” port
The mega Tuas Port, now under varying stages of construction, will consolidate all container berthing in Singapore into one location. It has started operating last December. Additional capacity will be added with full completion slated 20 years from now.
“Because we had planned ahead, our port was able to handle extra volumes during the pandemic. While ports in other countries experienced closures, severe congestion and long delays, our port remained open 24/7 throughout,” says Lee.
“This reinforced Singapore’s position as the “catch-up port” where vessels made up time for delays elsewhere,” says Lee.
Amid a global supply chain bunch up, Singapore handled a record high of 37.5 million TEUs last year, keeping it position as the world’s busiest transhipment hub,” he adds.
“Our decisions to press on with Changi T5 and Tuas Port send a strong and clear signal to the world. That Singapore is emerging stronger from the pandemic, and charging full steam ahead,” says Lee.