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Singapore Flyer

Updated by Dong Tinh

Friday 19 December 2014

Chinese name: 新加坡摩天观景轮
Malay name: Pelayang Singapura
Tamil name: சிங்கப்பூர் ஃப்ளையர்

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par Zizico

Photo ©NCCong 2014

The Singapore Flyer is a giant Ferris wheel in Singapore. Described by its operators as an observation wheel, it opened in 2008, construction having taken about 2½ years. It carried its first paying passengers on 11 February, opened to the public on 1 March, and was officially opened on 15 April. It has 28 air-conditioned capsules, each able to accommodate 28 passengers, and incorporates a three-storey terminal building.


The development has a gross building area of approximately 16,000 m2, built on a 33,700 m2 site along the Marina Promenade. Designed by Arup and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries with a capacity of up to 7.3 million passengers a year, the normally constant rotation of the wheel means that a complete trip lasts approximately 32 minutes.

The site includes a tropical rainforest garden. The Flyer’s 28 air-conditioned capsules are mounted outboard of the rim of the wheel structure, providing continuously unobstructed views. Each capsule has a floor area of 26 m2 and is capable of holding 28 passengers, or up to five wheelchairs and 15 other visitors when booked in advance for use by disabled guests.

The wheel initially rotated in a counter-clockwise direction when viewed from Marina Centre, but on 4 August 2008 this was reversed on the advice of Feng shui masters.

Wheelchair ramps and lifts, handicapped toilets, and a dedicated parking lot for the disabled are also provided.

Panorama ©NCCong 2014

General information

Cost: S$240 million (US$180 million) (GBP£90 million)
Owner 2003-2014: Singapore Flyer Pte Ltd
2014-Present: Straco Corporation Limited (90%), WTS Leisure Pte Ltd (10%)[4]
Height: 165 m (541 ft)

Construction details

Floor area: 33,700 m2 (362,700 sq ft)
Architect: Kisho Kurokawa Architects & Associates, DP Architects
Developer: Melchers Project Management
Engineer: Arup
Main contractor: Mitsubishi - Takenaka Consortium
Seating capacity: 784

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Breakdowns and stoppages

- In July 2008 the Flyer was stopped because of a minor fault in the braking system.
- On 4 December 2008, the wheel was stuck for nearly five hours due to bad weather and some 70 people were stranded.
- On 23 December 2008, the wheel stopped and trapped 173 passengers for about six hours. The breakdown was caused by a short circuit and fire in the Flyer’s wheel control room, which cut off the air-conditioning in the wheel. Eleven passengers were evacuated via a sling-like device from a few of the capsules, and those stranded were given food and drink. The wheel restarted nearly seven hours after it had stopped and two people were hospitalized. The Flyer was closed indefinitely and an investigation into the cause of the malfunction was launched. The wheel re-opened on 26 January 2009 after the Singapore Police received the final safety certification report from the Conformity Assessment Board. Following this breakdown, additional back-up systems costing about $3 million were installed. These included a generator, winches, three anti-fire and smoke systems, and heat detection devices.
- On 18 July 2010, the ride was shut after one of its electrical cables supplying power to the air-conditioning systems was struck by lightning, affecting the air-conditioning system. Some 200 passengers had to be evacuated. The Flyer re-opened on 20 July 2010 after repair work was completed.
- On 20 June 2013, operations were temporarily suspended to protect employees from record-high pollution levels in Singapore, the first time the Flyer had shut due to haze.