PA gets historic new home

By Nur Dianah Suhaimi

In the News ~ PA gets historic new home

In the News ~ PA gets historic new home

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

10 Comments. Leave new

  • And we will not forg
    6 February 2010 09:14

    Is there a structure or at the very least a plaque, in the conserved old school building with information that that is former Victoria School building and its history.

  • I vaguely remember seeing some picture of bricks lay in the small garden area in the shape of the school crest. I may be wrong. But I doubt there is anything like that in the building now. Perhaps it is not really necessary. Other old school buildings retained probably don't have it too.

  • And we will not forg
    6 February 2010 16:45

    Former SJI Building in Bras Basah Road

    Former CHIJ Building in Victoria Street

    What is there to remember the history of the Old Victoria School Building ?

  • And we will not forget
    7 February 2010 11:05

    “Which OVA activities do you look forward to in 2010?”

    A monument or plaque documenting the history of Victoria School and the old Victoria School Building at the conserved old school building.

    Something for old Tyrwhittians to champion as we move into the “Third Age” and beyond for future generations to remember.

  • Tyrwhittdays
    7 February 2010 10:18

    the old Victoria School building in Tyrwhitt Road is really one structure that is imprinted permanently in he minds, I am sure, of the thousands and thousands of students who had the opportunity to study under its roof. It looks so solid, dignified and project that grandeur of a great institution. It is recalled that many years ago during a school speech day, the guest of honour, the late Mr Tay Eng Soon, then Senior Minister of State, commented that he was very impressed by the majesty of the building whenver he had the occasion to be in the vicinity when he was a schoolboy (at ACS). I remembered hearing from the guards looking after the building during its days of unuse, that many Old Victorians had come from overseas to visit the site and recalled with nostlagia their days spent as schoolboys at the school. Perhaps the present school in Siglap Link should arrange for every presdent day Victoria Schoolboy to visit the People Association and more importantly to get a sense of history of their school and get a good feel of the original school premises where so many generations of male Singaporeans and not s small number female Singaporeans (HSC or Pre U students had their education there. Yes, it is not known why a similar plaque was not erected at old Victoria School site, as was the case done at SJI, CHIJ, and even the demolished Gan Eng School and Raffles Primary School sites.

  • And we will not forg
    7 February 2010 14:18

    A heritage building of a Governement School where boys who walked its halls became Presidents, Cabinet Ministers, Members of Parliaments, Permanent Secretaries, Generals and Corporate Leaders.

  • Reply to James January 31, 2010:
    The article is not complete. At the end of the article, there was an Old Victorian who is also a grassroots leader commenting on the building.
    Perhaps OVA can subscribe to Straits Times Online, so that we get complete articles here in future. 😉

  • There is an article titled "Green to the Core" in the Mar/Apr 2010 (Issue 51) Voices magazine by Central Singapore. In the article, it talk about the PA and the old Victoria School building. There are also several pictures of the building in its present state.

  • History of the National University of Singapore Society ____1936____The inaugural meeting of the Stamford Club, Singapore was held at Victoria School. Membership: 30.__Stamford Clubs were also formed in Malaya as well.

  • Old VS

    This $2 polymer note was issued on 12 January 2006. The front features the portrait of first President of Singapore, En. Yusof Bin Ishak. The back illustrates the education theme where a group of pupils interacting with a teacher in a "Borderless Classroom". Three prominent institutions of learning are seen in the background. From the extreme right is the institutions are Victoria Bridge School, the old Raffles Institution at Bras Basah Road, and the College of Medicine.

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