PA gets historic new home
By Nur Dianah Suhaimi
The conserved the old school building while converting the classrooms into sleek offices. The school hall-cum-canteen is now a dance studio and storage area for Chingay and National Day props. — ST PHOTO: ALPHONSUS CHERN
WHEN the People’s Association (PA) was set up 50 years ago, its headquarters was a former airport in Kallang. On Friday, it officially moved to another old building: the former Victoria School building in King George’s Avenue.
This time, however, the PA engaged architects and gave its new home a $47 million makeover.
The conserved the old school building while converting the classrooms into sleek offices. The school hall-cum-canteen is now a dance studio and storage area for Chingay and National Day props. A new five-storey extension block was built behind the old school and a sprawling lawn fronts the entire structure.
The changes won it the Architectural Heritage Awards last year, an annual honour given to well-restored monuments and conservation buildings in Singapore.
On Friday night, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who is also PA’s chairman, officially opened it new home in a ceremony attended by about 1,000 people, including Cabinet ministers and grassroots leaders. The event, held on the lawn, was like a mini National Day celebration, complete with floats, performers in colourful costumes as well as a fireworks and pyrotechnics display.
Mr Lee also opened the PA heritage gallery, an exhibition which charts the association’s growth over the past 50 years. The gallery will be a permanent fixture at the building’s atrium. These events are the first in a series of activities to be held this year to mark PA’s 50th anniversary.
From: The Straits Times