SINGAPORE: Transport Minister Lui Tuck Yew has explained how the Downtown Line construction work affected property in Watten estate along Bukit Timah Road.
Responding to Non-Constituency MP Gerald Giam in Parliament on Tuesday, Mr Lui said the incident was due to an unexpected and rapid draw down of groundwater during excavation works for Downtown Line Two.
When alerted to the incident, he said the Land Transport Authority installed more recharge wells to pump in water and stabilise ground settlement.
It also installed additional instruments to monitor groundwater levels.
Mr Lui said that at that time, excavation works had not begun. Bulk excavation works only started in December 2011.
As a precaution, LTA extended surveys in the estate and installed sensors in early 2012.
Between late August and early September of this year, LTA were alerted to soil movement and residents reported appearance of cracks.
LTA then dealt with the defects and took additional precautions around the Tan Kah Kee MRT site.
"Since the early days of the incident, there have been no further reports of property damage. LTA has taken prompt action to make temporary repairs for the residents while investigations to ascertain the actual cause of the ground settlement continued," said Mr Lui.
"When tunneling work for DTL 2 is completed around the end of 2013, LTA will make good the damage to properties caused by the construction. Let me assure the House that LTA places paramount importance on safety and we'll take all appropriate precautions in the construction of our road and rail projects," he added.
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