Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Dialogue session with NEA, URA and BCA

Dialogue session

For several nights, I went round my neighbourhood collecting feedback of affected residents on the noise and air pollution caused by the ongoing construction project. To one another's surprise, we discovered that almost every one had made similar complaints to NEA and TPS Construction frequently.

On the morning of 20th February, several affected residents attended the dialogue session and voiced their concerns.

Representatives from the respective authorities were :

Mr Jothieswaran P
Chief Engineer
Pollution Control Department
The National Environment Agency

Mr Shee Siu Ming
Senior Executive Engineer
Construction and Enforcement Department
Building Engineer Division
Building and Construction Authority

Ms Charis Song
Senior Planning Executive
Urban Redevelopment Authority

Khairul and Mulyady (NEA)
Ryan Lim (URA)

from left - Charis Song (URA), Jothieswaran and Khairul (NEA)

Regarding the constant loud noise affecting residents at night and on weekends, NEA's Jothieswaran told MCL Land and TPS Construction Pte Ltd to ensure that noisy works like drilling, hacking, polishing should be avoided before 9 am on Saturday and 10 am on Sunday, and work should end by 5 pm. Noisy work should be avoided before 9am and to end on 6pm on weekdays. The condo development will be completed in April, latest June 2009.

Regarding complaints on mosquitoes and rat problem, residents noted that NEA has been quick and efficient in dealing with them. NEA staff were despatched as soon as they receive such feedback.

with BCA representative Mr Shee Siu Ming

It is a shock to the residents present that any structural defects such as cracks appearing on our houses, should be brought up during the piling stage. BCA can then determine if they are fresh cracks due to piling works.

Cracks or defects in houses could happen because of expansion and contraction due to temperature changes, or vibration or ground movements.

Ordinary citizens are not aware of such a regulation. No where in the website of BCA could I find such information.

Affected residents were asked to liaise with TPS Construction's Project Manager, Mr Lee Che Ping direct on their structural defects.

representatives from MCL Land and TPS Construction Pte Ltd

Residents were told there is a PR personnel called Mable, on site to answer and attend to the queries of its neighbouring community. We were not aware of that. Mable was not mentioned or recommended even though several residents have approached TPS Construction staff personally.

Many residents have spoken to foreman Neo who did not bother to inform his company about the residents' feedback for these past 2 and a half years.

We were also advised to look for relevant information on its erected board outside the construction site.

This dialogue session has not only made me understand the hard work behind the respective authorities, it has cleared some misconceptions I had.

I'm glad to know that NEA has a computerised feedback system where unanswered query from the public would be forwarded to senior management after a certain number of days. We are assured that all our feedback is being addressed.

All the representatives replied to questions from the residents objectively. Jothieswara is to be commended for his empathy and outreach to residents.

I hope there can be more of such useful dialogue sessions between residents and civil servants on problems in the community. We should get together to solve problems more efficiently and productively.


Shauna said...

I am new here! What a great blog :)

oceanskies79 said...

Thanks for this post.

There will be constructions near my place in the time to come, and the information related to structural cracks and BCA will come useful.

I am impressed by your determination to advocate for what needs to be. I think this is the gift granted to you. :)