The culture that is Singapore

Thanks to the always great James Crabtree (@jamescrabtree), I learned two awesome facts about Singapore this morning.

First, they have children’s books about “famous urban planners.”  I’m not sure which is funnier, the fact that there are famous urban planners or that there are children’s books extolling their virtues.  I guess this is handy for nights when your kids can’t fall asleep. Here’s a photo of one of them and a link to where you can buy it (and even read a sample):


Here’s the synopsis that’s given at the publisher’s link:

“How does a spoilt young boy and party-going dandy become the man who housed a nation? Discover the passion that drives Lim Kim San from his comfortable, carefree life into a mission that would change Singapore forever.”

This seems like the worst superhero story ever. Maybe Zac Snyder can direct it.

Second, if your kids reads the book and cannot get enough urban planning, you are in luck.  The Singapore Housing and Development Board has a treat for you.  Here is their description of the fun you can have on a tour:

Come visit the HDB Gallery and share a slice of Singapore’s public housing story through the multi-sensory and self-exploratory exhibits. You can also watch the 3D fly-through video and take a virtual tour of the different zones, or download our brochure.

I cannot recommend the “fly through” highly enough–it is a crack up and definitely worth checking out.  This saved me a 17 hour flight and thousands of dollars!

2 thoughts on “The culture that is Singapore

  1. I think your arguments relating to Singapore are biased, and frankly do not reflect well on the sanity of your blog.

    Men who have done good deeds deserve credit where it is due, in the form that it is due. Sure, a children’s book is overkill, but having a book at all is not. Lim Kim San designed plans for housing that turned Singapore into a much more developed society (refer to for a detailed lesson on how the HDB is continuing to change the lives of Singaporeans).

    All of the above does not mean that what has been done is not overrated. It may be somewhat too much, but it does not remove the credit that Lim Kim San deserves.

    Try doing that to children’s books written about Sir Isaac Newton ( instead. Frankly there isn’t much of a difference in essence. Sir Isaac Newton advanced science a great deal in his own way, and Lim Kim San did similarly in Singapore.

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