#Heritage Jurong Town Hall
📷 1: An aerial view of the surrounding area of Jurong Town Hall in the 1970s (Periscope: A JTC Magazine)
📷 2: An aerial view of the surrounding area of Jurong Town Hall at present (Periscope: A JTC Magazine)
📷 3: An advertisement of the national design competition on 7 April 1969 (The Straits Times)
📷 4: The exterior view of Jurong Town Hall (URA)
On a hill overlooking the sprawling Jurong estate stands an edifice that looks like a giant ship’s hull, with a mast towering into the sky. This is Jurong Town Hall, one of Singapore’s early Brutalist buildings — an architectural form of massive blocks of raw concrete that gained popularity here as we looked for an international image to project to the world.
Brutalist buildings portray power and functionality through its undecorated structures, as seen in Jurong Town Hall’s huge horizontal blocks and 50-metre tower with a digital clock, once considered to be the largest in Southeast Asia.
Completed in 1974, Jurong Town Hall served as the headquarters of Jurong Town Corporation (currently known as JTC Corporation). The design was the winning submission of a pioneering group of local architects who won a national competition in 1969.
In many ways, Jurong Town Hall symbolises Singapore’s pioneering journey into uncharted waters.
Jurong area was just a swampland, when then-Finance Minister Dr Goh Keng Swee tasked the newly formed Economic Development Board to turn it into an industrial estate, as part of Singapore’s early industrialisation plans. It was risky as Singapore had little prior experience.
This mandate was handed over to JTC when it was set up in 1968. The project aimed to develop a 9,000-acre area through land reclamation, resettlement, and infrastructure construction. Over time, JTC also oversaw the construction of a town centre, roads, recreational facilities, business parks, and hospitals in Jurong.
JTC moved out of Jurong Town Hall by 2000, making way for young start-up companies to move in. In 2005, Jurong Town Hall was awarded conservation status by the URA. And in 2015, it was gazetted as a National Monument, treasured for its significance in Singapore’s early journey towards industrial success. #HEREitage #heritage #brutalist