by Thulaja, Naidu Ratnala
Ophir Road begins as an offshoot from Rochor Canal Road, and ends at Republic Boulevard at one point and East Coast Parkway at another point. It runs parallel to Rochor Road. Landmarks along the road include Raffles Hospital and the Church of Our Lady of Lourdes.1
Ophir Road was named after Mount Ophir, a popular climbing destination in West Johor, Malaysia.2 On 8 September 1997, Ophir Road became the first road in Singapore to have the Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) gantry installed, The ERP gantry replaced the Road Pricing System gantry and provides an automated payment method for the use of roads during peak hours.3
Raffles Hospital is located at the junction of North Bridge Road and Ophir Road.4 The building was previously known as Blanco Court, a marketplace for stationary and party goods built in 1982.5 In 1997, Blanco Court was acquired by the Raffles Medical Group and Pidemco Land. It was then refurbished into the state-of-the-art 13-storey Raffles Hospital, which was officially opened on 16 March 2002.6
The Church of Our Lady of Lourdes was founded in 1888 by Joachim Alexander Marie Meneuvrier (Father), a French parish priest, to cater to the spiritual needs of South Indian migrant workers.7 The church’s neo-Gothic architecture was modelled after its namesake building in Lourdes, France.8
Kit-ling le-pai-tng cheng chiang-kun iapi in Hokkien (means “in front of the Kling church beside Johore Road”).9
Naidu Ratnala Thulaja
1. Mighty minds street directory. (2015). Singapore: Angel Publishing, maps 111, 111C. (Call no.: RSING q912.5957 MMSD-[DIR])
2. Savage, V. R., & Yeoh, B. S. A. (2013). Singapore street names: A study of toponymics. Singapore: Marshall Cavendish Editions, p. 280. (Call no.: RSING 915.9570014 SAV-[TRA])
3. First ERP gantry installed. (1997, September 9). The Straits Times, p. 40. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
4. Mighty minds street directory. (2015). Singapore: Angel Publishing, map 111C. (Call no.: RSING q912.5957 MMSD-[DIR])
5. Koh, B. P. (1997, September 18). Goodbye to good buys at Blanco Court. The Straits Times, p. 47; Hwang, T. F. (1982, June 26). T. F. Hwang takes you down memory lane. The Straits Times, p. 16. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
6. Yeow, P. L. (1997, September 13). RMG, Pidemco pair up for $200m project. The Straits Times, p. 67; Sim, A. (2001, April 7). Recover inn style. The Straits Times, p. L6; Long, S. (2002, March 17). Health-care cost must remain affordable to S’poreans. The Straits Times, p. 3. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
7. Church of Our Lady of Lourdes (Singapore). (1988). Church of Our Lady of Lourdes, Singapore centenary souvenir, 1888–1988. Singapore: Church of Our Lady of Lourdes, p. 20. (Call no. RCLOS 282.5957 CHU); Chua, G. (2014, January 20). Church joins in Tamil harvest fest. The Straits Times, p. 6. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
8. Edwards, N., & Keys, P. (1988). Singapore: A guide to buildings, streets, places. Singapore: Times Books International, p. 264. (Call no.: RSING 915.957 EDW-[TRA])
9. Savage, V. R., & Yeoh, B. S. A. (2013). Singapore street names: A study of toponymics. Singapore: Marshall Cavendish Editions, p. 280. (Call no.: RSING 915.9570014 SAV-[TRA]); Firmstone, H. W. (1905). Chinese names of streets and places in Singapore and the Malay Peninsula. Journal of the Straits Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, 42, pp. 116–117. (Call no.: RQUIK 959.5 JMBRAS)
The information in this article is valid as at 2004 and correct as far as we are able to ascertain from our sources. It is not intended to be an exhaustive or complete history of the subject. Please contact the Library for further reading materials on the topic.
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