He said it was because the station will include a Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) building, where travellers can clear Singapore and Malaysia CIQ with one stop.
Singapore on Friday broke ground for the Johor Bahru-Singapore RTS Link at the Woodlands North site, exactly two months after Malaysia had its ground-breaking ceremony at the Bukit Chagar Immigration, Customs and Quarantine (ICQ) site on Nov 22, 2020.
Ong said the ceremony marked the start of infrastructure works to connect Singapore and Johor Bahru via an LRT, which is closer to a medium-capacity MRT.
"This is a significant bilateral project between Singapore and Malaysia, that will benefit both our peoples, and help ease congestion on the Causeway,” said Ong on his official Facebook page late Friday.
The RTS Link is a 4 km rail shuttle service between the Singapore terminus at Woodlands North station and the Malaysia terminus at Bukit Chagar station in Johor Bahru.
It has a large capacity of up to 10,000 passengers per hour in each direction.
Meanwhile, the republic’s Land Transport Authority (LTA) said the RTS Link Woodlands North Station will be constructed underground at a maximum depth of 28 metres.
There will be three stories, with two basement levels and an underground linkway to the CIQ building, LTA revealed in its website.
It said the facilities will be adjacent to Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL) Woodlands North MRT station and seamlessly connected via an underground concourse.
"The tunnels will be connected to the viaduct that crosses the Straits of Johor at a height of 25 metres,” it said.
LTA noted that ground conditions are expected to be challenging as it is a site of granite condition.
Therefore, construction will involve the use of high-capacity drilling machines, extended piling works as well as rock demolition during the excavation works, it said.
Aside from the technical complexities, LTA said the cross-border nature of the construction also meant that many stakeholders on both sides would be involved.
"Both sides have been in close discussions and coordination to ensure the smooth and timely implementation of the RTS Link project,” it said.
LTA said it remained committed to working closely with all relevant parties to see through the successful implementation of the project. - Bernama
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