#TIL - Today I learnt that back in 1966, Singapore had approximately 1,600 streets. Since then, the number of streets has more than doubled, to 3,200.
In 1966, most of the streets were clustered along the central-South area of Singapore, where most of our financial and trade activities took place. Today, we have streets in almost every corner of our island.
Our street names have varied origins, from Malay, Hindi, Hokkien as well as English and more. Most of our streets have Malay names, such as Jalan Pelangi (“rainbow street”). There are even several streets named after different types of bananas in Malay – Lorong Pisang Asam/Batu/Emas/Hijau/Raja/Udang near Beauty World MRT station.
English names form around one quarter of our street names, such as King’s Road, Queen’s Road and Duke’s Road in Bukit Timah. The remaining street names mostly have Chinese or Indian origins, such as Ang Mo Kio (“white man’s bridge” in Hokkien), and Dhoby Ghuat (“washerman’s place” in Hindi).
The diversity of our street names reflects our identity as a nation of different cultures, sharing a common bond of Singapore as home.