Pulau Tekong: Singapore’s first polder

Where Boskalis used to make new land by supplying sand, land is now being developed in a way that is unique by Asian standards to enlarge the island of Pulau Tekong – Singapore’s first polder is on its way.

Boskalis photo

The future polder, which will cover an area of 810 hectares, consisted mostly of water before the work began in 2018. Only some sections of the future ten-kilometer-long dike that will protect the polder were in place back then, but they needed to be upgraded for the change in reclamation method.

Now, the Dutch-Japanese Boskalis-Penta Ocean Construction (POC) joint venture already completed more than half of the project as a whole.

The new dike is in place and is designed with a safety standard for wave overtopping of once every 100,000 years.

Boskalis’ mega trailing suction hopper dredger Queen of the Netherlands and backhoe dredger Oceanus played an important role during that initial phase by deepening part of the 100-hectare storm water collection pond – a retention lake for excess rainwater – and POC deployed some dredging equipment as well.

In addition, Boskalis’ subsidiary Cofra deployed vertical drainage equipment on the project to accelerate the consolidation of the watery clay.

Sustainable land reclamation

Because of all the different activities following on from each other in quick succession, mutual communications and coordination of the individual schedules are crucial here, said Boskalis. All for the timely completion of the entire Pulau Tekong project, which involved years of research with assistance from local and Dutch consultants.

This makes Pulau Tekong a unique project both for Singapore and for the client, the Housing Development Board, according to the Dutch company.

For this innovative project an alternative and sustainable way to reclaim land was needed. The client looked for a contractor with, amongst others, experience in dike construction and, obviously, that is one of our specialties,” said project director Jaap Dekker.