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The Architectural Design Concept
View from Brani Ave
View from Brani Ave

The architectural design concept reinforces the connection of the Army to the land and is built upon the twin ideas of emergence/growth and sustainability. The concept of emergence/growth arises from the Army's evolution and transformation throughout the years. Hence the most prominent feature of the building-the roof, literally grows out of the earth, rising in a sweeping arc along the lake.

The rising movement of the roof is supported by three rock-like structures that anchor the building firmly to the ground. The rock-like structures conveys a sense of the permanence and strength, symbolising the values that remain important for sustaining growth and change.

The Army Museum of Singapore - view from Singapore Discovery Centre
View from Singapore Discovery Centre
The concept of sustainability extends to the integration of the building with the topography of the site. Instead of making its presence felt by intruding or building into the pond, the sweeping roof of the Army Museum gains its momentum by accentuating the arc of the lake, rising from the ground as it continues its sweep. Occupying the space between the existing lake and the road, the building design responds to the site through its internal layout and spatial flow, using the arc of the lake as its primary axis of visitor movement.

Pushing the concept of sustainability further, the preservation of the existing ecosystem of the site is another important objective. Hence, gaps within the building were introduced to function as pockets of green space from

 which trees and plants grow. Conceptually, these green spaces bring elements of the natural landscape into the interior, reinforcing the close connection between the building and the land.

Preserving History
View from lake
View from lake

The uniquely Singapore experience of National Service (NS) will be chronicled in a new Army Museum of Singapore which is scheduled to be opened next year in conjunction with the 40th anniversary of NS. DSTA is the principal designer, developer and construction manager behind this meaningful heritage landmark. Our programme team has designed the facility to encapsulate the essence of the Army's rich heritage.

The new museum, which will be open to the public, was one of the recommendations made

 by the Fourth Committee to Recognise the Contributions of the Operationally Ready NSmen to Total Defence group chaired by Second Minister for Defence, Dr Ng Eng Hen.

The museum will feature six galleries that showcase the Army's development since its formative years. The shared NS experience of the men will be captured through exhibits such as a mock-up of a 1970s soldier's bunk and displays of army equipment complemented by the 'sounds and smells' of battle. 

Putting together the structures is DSTA's programme team from Infrastructure Projects. Leading the team, Programme Manager Tang Tat Wah said, "The Army Museum is uniquely designed to complement the existing buildings and environment. Its three rock-like structures symbolise the magnificent history and strength of our Army as well as the solidarity among our soldiers. Efforts were made to ensure that the museum is not only functional but also aesthetically pleasing."

DSTA's architect (Protective Structure) Pauline Ang highlighted that the architectural design has to incorporate the concept of continuous growth to reflect the transformation journey of our Army. "The most prominent feature of the building is the roof, which rises from the ground in a sweeping arc, thereby suggesting the evolution and continuous growth of our Army. In a deliberate reversal of norms, we have designed the entry of the building to be from the top level instead of at the bottom level. The visitor will stroll through the top level galleries and descend via the atrium, from where he turns back into the lower level galleries," she revealed.

Brigadier-General Hugh Lim, Chairman of the Army Museum Working Committee, said, "DSTA is an important partner of the Army. Besides enhancing the operational capabilities of the Army, DSTA puts in place the infrastructure of the museum and brings together the story that we want to tell."

Defence Minister Teo Chee Hean officiated at the ground-breaking ceremony of the museum on 21 June.

Last updated on 01 Mar 2017
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