Sunday, September 22, 2013

7 Best Pedestrian Bridges in Singapore - ZeeloTips


Normally, when people think of pedestrian bridges, they will think that they are just structures that will help them cross from one place to another. That may be true but there are some pedestrian bridges in Singapore that really stand out. How? Well, they have really awesome views when you try to cross them, they have beautiful and out-of-the-ordinary designs and some of them even have some extra functionality. In this article, I am going to countdown the 7 best pedestrian bridges that you can find in Singapore that are unique and stand out from the crowd. Number 7 being a great pedestrian bridge while number 1 being the best. Want to find out more? Read on.

7) Marina Bridge


Number 7 goes to the Marina Bridge. The Marina Bridge, located right here at the Marina Barrage is a bridge that also doubles up as a structure that controls Singapore's flood problems. Underneath the bridge, there are multiple gates that allow the bridge to control the amount of water coming into the reservoir, the Marina Reservoir to be specific, to prevent flooding or the overflowing of water. Not only that, the bridge is also responsible for the damming of the Marina Channel to become what it's known now as the Marina Reservoir. Thanks to this, the Marina Bay area is now cleaner and does not have as much boats as in the past giving way to developments such as the Marina Bay Sands integrated resorts.


The Marina Bridge itself is pretty great. It's not as beautiful as all the other bridges that are listed on this list but it is actually the most useful. The bridge has several pumps to activate the floodgates AKA crest gates, so that it can control the water flow, and it's also great that they made use of the space on top of the pumps. So what's right on top of the pumps? Shelters. There are multiple shelters along the bridge that allows visitors to rest, relax and have a very nice view of the sea. The Marina Barrage itself is a pretty remarkable place and you should really check out not only the bridge, but the Marina Barrage as well. 

6) The Helix


Number 6 goes to The Helix bridge which connects the Marina Bay area to the Marina Centre area (the area with Suntec City, Ritz Carlton, Millenia Walk and etc). It's situated right next to the Bayfront Bridge along Bayfront Avenue, which is primarily for vehicular usage and also, it's parallel to the much older Benjamin Sheares Bridge. The Helix was opened in the year 2010 and it was also opened around the same time as the Marina Bay Sands integrated resorts.


What's great about The Helix is that it has an awesome design. First of all, it was designed to look like a Human DNA and what's even better is that the shape and orientation represents the DNA of a left-handed human which is really awesome. (Even though I'm a right-handed person). Apart from that, there are also several so-called 'pods' that stick out of the structure so you can have beautiful panoramic views of the Marina Bay area. It looks even better at night thanks to the wonderful combination of bright blue, purple and white lights. The Helix allows you to cross from Marina Bay all the way to Marina Centre in style and that's why it's Number 7 in my list.

5) Alexandra Arch


This bridge may not be as exciting as the previous ones that I have just featured but it is still a great bridge nonetheless. First of all, the design is really unusual which is why it's in Number 5. You see this semicircle kind of shape along one side of the bridge itself and not only that, it lights up beautifully at night. Other than that, the Alexandra Arch also kind of looks like a slightly slanted aeroplane. I don't know why but it sure does look like it to me.


Apart from that, the Alexandra Arch is also part of this walking trail called the Southern Ridges which is a combination of parks and bridges that stretch from HarbourFront MRT Station all the way to Kent Ridge Park in the western part of Singapore. I have already written an article about the Southern Ridges (with the exception of Kent Ridge Park and Canopy Walk) which you can check out by clicking right over here. The Alexandra Arch is located along Alexandra Road and it's definitely a great pedestrian bridge that's worth checking out. It belongs in Number 5 due to its slight design similarities to an aeroplane.

4) Alkaff Bridge


This bridge, which is in Number 4 of my list, is one of the most colourful bridges you can find in Singapore. I mean seriously, look at that amazing colourful design! It's one of the bridges that's found along Singapore River and also one of the most colourful. Although the bridge was painted in the year 2004, the bridge has already been existing since the 1990s way before it was painted in its current colours. The artwork was actually painted by a Filipino artist called Pacita Abad which also created lots of other beautiful artwork which can be found in other parts of the world. The weird (but sad) thing was that, she passed way a few months after she painted the bridge back in the year 2004.


The artwork itself is pretty remarkable. Not only is it vibrant and colourful, it also has kid-friendly designs that make it a must-visit for children. Other than the artwork, the bridge itself has beautiful views of the Singapore River and the riverside shops and food establishments. The bridge was also designed to look like a 'tongkang' which means light boat for people to carry things. This bridge is located at the Singapore River near River Valley Road.

3) Benjamin Sheares Bridge


Number 3 goes to the oldie but goodie Benjamin Sheares bridge and it's the oldest among all the other bridges featured in this article. It's part of the East Coat Park Expressway which is also known as the ECP and it's named after Singapore's second president, Mr Benjamin Sheares. It was opened in 1981 and it's one of the most popular expressway bridges due to its stunning views of the Marina Bay and Marina South areas and its great accessibility to the city and south of Singapore. It's an easy way for the people living in the eastern part of Singapore to access the city area.


You may be thinking, why am I talking about a bridge along an expressway when this article is about pedestrian bridges? Well, simply because right beside the expressway itself is a space for people to actually walk. Yes, that is right you can actually walk right beside an expressway and it's seriously has one of the most beautiful views ever. You can see the Marina Barrage and the Marina Reservoir in a distance.


To get up the bridge, all you have to do is to find a staircase, climb up and done! You'll be up at the bridge in no time. You can find the staircases behind The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, at Gardens By The Bay near Dragonfly Lake, an area opposite the entrance of Gardens By The Bay East (shwon above) and opposite the Ritz Carlton Millenia Hotel beside Marina Centre Bus Terminal. Look up Google Maps Street View to find out more.

2) Sentosa Boardwalk


Okay, maybe this isn't really a pedestrian bridge but more of a causeway but I still think this place deserves a spot in this list, number 2, to be precise. Sentosa Boardwalk is a boardwalk that's parallel to the existing Sentosa Gateway for visitors to access Sentosa Island from mainland Singapore. The reason why I like this is because of the design.


Unlike regular pedestrian bridges, this one has travellators for you to stay on so that you don't have to walk all the way to the other end. Not only that, there are also plenty of shelters to protect yourself from the sweltering heat. There are plenty of seats for you to have a rest on and also, there are some restaurants and cafes at the Boardwalk itself which is pretty awesome. Ticket booths and a gift shop are also available for you to buy tickets and get your souvenirs before even entering the island.


The Sentosa Boardwalk's design is mainly made of wood which explains the name and it was recently opened in the year 2011. Now, it's much easier to get to the Island thanks to this boardwalk and you don't even have to deal with the crowded Sentosa Express and Sentosa buses. Plus, admission fee via Sentosa Boardwalk is much cheaper. It costs S$1 to enter the Island which you can pay by either cash or your EZ Link card. The Boardwalk also has great views so it also doubles up as a promenade. You can see the Cable Car in a distance and you can also see some other buildings in a distance as well. 

1) Henderson Waves


Number 1 belongs to the Henderson Waves which is by far the best pedestrian bridge that you can find right here in the island of sunny Singapore. Why is it the best you may ask? Simple. Because it's the tallest pedestrian bridge in Singapore. Apart from that, the bridge itself has an odd shape that's really unique. The shape is almost like a very thick squiggly line. The bridge itself is made of wood and of course, some other building materials like concrete similar to the Sentosa Boardwalk and it's located at Henderson Road.


The Henderson Waves is like what I have mentioned earlier, the tallest pedestrian bridge in Singapore and it has plenty of seats and shelters for you to rest on. It's an iconic bridge and it's also a popular place for wedding photographers to take photos of newlyweds and the bridge was even featured in several local TV shows and local music videos. Just like the Alexandra Arch that I have mentioned before, it's part of the Southern Ridges walking trail which starts from the HarbourFront area and ends all the way at Kent Ridge Park


This pedestrian bridge is really a great place if you are a big nature lover and if you like to see great views. If you look closely, you can even see the Keppel Bay Towers and if your eyes are sharp enough, you can see the Sentosa Island in a distance. If you look below on the other hand, you can see Henderson Road with lots of greenery that can be found around it. These are the reasons why I have chosen Henderson Waves as the best pedestrian bridge in Singapore.

Conclusion

Overall, the pedestrian bridges that I have just featured here are not regular bridges, but they are bridges with their own style, uniqueness and personality. They have unique designs, great views and they even offer more functionality than just helping people cross from one place to another. These functions include seats, shelters, F&B outlets, travellators, flood control gates and so much more. If you happen to come across any of these bridges, do feel free and take your time to cross and appreciate all the features of the bridge. I can guarantee you that these bridges are nothing like the typical bridges you always use to get to the bus stop, HDB flats or shopping centres. Any other pedestrian bridges you think that should belong in this article? Let me know in the comments below!

ZeeloTips is a monthly article series where I discuss all the things that you can do to make the most out of your stay in Singapore. Most of the things I discuss can and will help you not only have some fun but also save some money at the same time. For more articles like this, check out the ZeeloTips label by clicking here.

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