June 5th, 2006

krazy koati

Over under sideways down, backwards forwards square and round

Well, huh. I knew there were renovations going on at the Centrepoint mall; that amounts to putting a couple more floors on to the building. And I knew they were turning what is currently some empty space along Orchard Road into new development. One of those spots has been a parking lot across the street from Centrepoint. They're serious about developing it, though: they've put plywood up around the parking lot and temporary curbs to block the street entrances and exits for cars. Over the former taxi entrance, too, someone printed out a copy of a ``NO PARKING'' sign, and pasted that onto the plywood.

But it's not just the parking lot being removed, and not just the mall being made into a larger mall. As part of the construction work, the pedestrian underpass leading from the mall across the road to the parking lot is being officially closed. This was its last day open. There won't here be any more ancient backlit posters for Dove chocolate (with engaging slogans like ``All you need is Dove'') with the putrid air of old second-hand smoke. Even the escalator was shut down, displaying only ``14'' on its seven-segment LED display. I'm not sure why the escalator needed to be shut down ahead of the rest of the underpass, but perhaps it was to alter pedestrian traffic patterns early.

It's got me wondering about demolishing the underpass. Will they bother filling in all the ground there or will they just wall off access? And what will they do with the escalator? The machinery and the stairs may be several years old, and they are, but they're in rather good shape. Are they just thrown away? Where do you go to throw out escalator steps? Or will they be polished up, repainted, and re-sold? In that case how much do second-hand escalator parts cost compared to brand-new ones? These are all questions I feel I cannot answer.

Remarkably, I was not a difficult child in asking questions about how the world works. These are all things that worry me these days.

Trivia: Among the rumors ahead of the Gordon Riots of 1780 was that 20,000 Jesuits had been hidden in underground tunnels beneath the Surrey bank of the Thames and were preparing to blow it up, flooding London. Source: George III, Christopher Hibbert.

Currently Reading: Big Cotton, Stephen Yafa.