A unique mock-up bus made its first appearance at LTA’s Our Bus Journey Carnival at Ngee Ann City on 11 March 2016. A Singapore Traction Company bus, STC 609, a 1967 Nissan RX102K3, was salvaged from a scrapyard and restored to its former glory, and showcased to the public for the first time.
STC 609 was one of fifty Nissan RX102K3 buses delivered to Singapore Traction Company (STC) in 1967, built with bodywork by Fuji Heavy Industries. Back then, STC held a monopoly over all bus services serving the Central Business District (CBD) ever since it began operations in October 1925. Service 18 was one such service, running between Tampines Road and Shenton Way.
Shortly after the 1971 Bus Reorganization, STC was forced to close down in December 1971 owing to great financial losses leading to the revocation of its omnibus license. Resources were distributed to three new bus operators, namely Associated Bus Services (ABS), Amalgamated Bus Company (ABC) and United Bus Company (UBC), and by 1973, all were merged to form the new Singapore Bus Service (SBS). Eventually registered as SBS6076T, this particular bus continued revenue service until its retirement in the late 1980s.
Located in a scrapyard (perhaps with the assistance of bus enthusiasts), in SBS livery and in decrepit condition, the bus was subsequently restored to its former glory. The interior and exterior were patched up and given a fresh coat of paint, new seats modelled after the old ones were installed, as well as modern handgrips. Only the front half of the bus was fully restored; the rear half was free of interior furnishings. At the bus carnival, a projector screen was installed, detailing the restoration of the bus.
LexBuild International Pte Ltd, a local multi-modal engineering service provider, was selected as part of the LTA-led effort to restore the bus, which also involved event organiser Pico Art. All photos are obtained from Lexbuild’s website.
The bus was first showcased to the public at LTA’s Our Bus Journey Carnival at Ngee Ann City. It was also exhibited at subsequent carnivals at VivoCity and Toa Payoh HDB Hub.