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Speech by Mrs Lim Hwee Hua, Minister of State for Finance and Transport, at VivoCity Topping-Out Ceremony, 18 April 2006, Tuesday, 6.30 pm at VivoCity

18 Apr 2006

Distinguished Guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Good afternoon

1. It gives me great pleasure to officiate at VivoCity's Topping-Out ceremony. Derived from the word 'Vivacity', VivoCity brings to mind a picture of colour, energy and vibrancy.

2. Indeed, VivoCity is yet another exciting landmark project in Singapore. The development of VivoCity signals an important new stage in the rejuvenation of Singapore as a tourism destination. It is part of Singapore's 2015 vision to re-make, develop and transform the country into a vibrant city that is open 24 by 7 with the greatest shopping and dining experiences, one that appeals to citizens and tourists alike.

3. There are many dynamic experiences on the cards, including the upcoming projects like the integrated resort on Sentosa and the multi-concept entertainment hub at St James Power Station. For nature lovers, the URA has also planned pedestrian linkages to link the 9-kilometre chain of hills stretching from Mt Faber through Telok Blangah Hill to Kent Ridge Park. From Mt Faber, URA is also constructing a nature trail to HarbourFront MRT station and VivoCity. Hence VivoCity could be a start or end point for this green belt walk. All these will certainly enhance the rich tapestry of leisure options for visitors to VivoCity.

4. VivoCity will also house a unique blend of both commercial activities and an international collection of artwork. As part of Singapore 2006, VivoCity will be participating in Singapore's first visual arts biennale, the Singapore Biennale 2006, in October this year. In addition, the winning entry for VivoCity's student design contest for innovative and interactive street furniture will be installed alongside the works by these international artists. This is a truly commendable effort to integrate art into a commercial environment to enrich the total lifestyle experience of visitors to VivoCity.

5. This makes VivoCity a must-see destination for Singaporeans and visitors alike. Every aspect of VivoCity ? from the location to the architecture, the retail and leisure options as well as the superb tenant mix, will offer an appealing and truly unique shopping and lifestyle experience.

6. For this vision and execution, Mapletree must be applauded. It has not confined its vision to just VivoCity. It has taken an integrated and holistic approach. VivoCity, the HarbourFront Centre and the upcoming Integrated Resort at Sentosa, as well as upgrades for St James Power Station, Mt Faber and Sentosa are an integral part of the overall development to create a refreshing and compelling lifestyle, shopping and entertainment hub at the HarbourFront precinct.

7. It is also a plus point that VivoCity is well linked. Besides the waterway connection via the Singapore Cruise Centre, the HarbourFront precinct is served by several land transport projects that have enhanced its connectivity. For Singaporeans, commuting between here and other parts of the island is even easier now with the recently completed upgrading of Telok Blangah and Pasir Panjang roads, as well as Keppel Road and the AYE interchange.

8. At the same time, the short drive between here and Shenton Way and Tanjong Pagar is now even smoother. And when it's completed in about 4 years, the Circle Line will converge with the North East Line here at HarbourFront, making it a major transport node.

9. VivoCity has the iconic stature to draw local residents and visitors from all over the world. It had a good start and has already received much international attention and publicity for its architecture. I am confident that under the management of Mapletree, this development will draw many local and international visitors and add to the vibrancy of the HarbourFront precinct.

10. I wish you every success in this endeavour.

Thank you.