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Woodlands MRT Station is now eco-friendly

SINGAPORE — Smart lighting at Woodlands MRT Station, the country’s first station to feature such a system, was officially unveiled yesterday by National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan.

Woodlands MRT Station is now eco-friendly

National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan (centre) and SMRT Chief Executive and President Desmond Kuek at Woodlands MRT Station yesterday. Photo: Ernest Chua

SINGAPORE — Smart lighting at Woodlands MRT Station, the country’s first station to feature such a system, was officially unveiled yesterday by National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan.

The station — which underwent renovations that ended in March — now boasts an adjustable lighting system that ensures the station is sufficiently lit. Natural skylights at the concourse area minimise energy used by artificial lighting.

Other environmentally-friendly features to save water, use energy efficiently and reduce waste generation include improved natural ventilation, jet and ceiling fans to keep temperatures comfortable and sensor-operated escalators and lifts that consume more power only when occupied.

Toilets are installed with fittings to reduce the rate of water flow and water consumption is regularly monitored to detect leaks.

In recognition of these eco-friendly features, Woodlands MRT Station was awarded the Building and Construction Authority’s Green Mark (Gold) accolade in April — the first MRT station to clinch the honour since the scheme began in 2005.

The scheme evaluates the environmental impact of a building’s facilities and operations in terms of energy and water efficiency, environmental protection and indoor environmental quality.

There are about 1,700 Green Mark buildings in Singapore today, up from 17 in 2005. Buildings account for almost 40 per cent of the country’s electricity consumption and the BCA aims to have 80 per cent of all buildings in Singapore “green” by 2030, as part of a bigger national drive for environmental sustainability.

Retail tenants at the station’s Woodlands Xchange mall yesterday also became the first shop owners to get the Project: Eco-Shop label.

Jointly developed by SMRT and the Singapore Environment Council, Project: Eco-Shop is a certification programme launched in July that encourages shop owners to adopt environmentally-responsible business practices.

“These achievements encourage us to take greater strides in our quest to reduce our environmental footprint and we seek to adopt this model of ‘green’ operations at other MRT stations and Xchanges,” said SMRT Chief Executive and President Desmond Kuek.

Singapore’s MRT network has close to 100 stations and sees more than 2.5 million passenger trips daily. As to whether cost savings may be passed on to commuters, TODAY understands that since the features started operating only recently, the operator would need time to observe if there are tangible savings.

In response to TODAY’s queries, SMRT said it is conducting feasibility studies on adopting the Woodlands MRT Station model for two to three more above-ground stations, including one at a regional centre.

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