Dragons’ origins are uncertain, but they first appeared in our public housing world in the early 1970s – in the form of monuments and fountains, for example. The first dragons were created in HDB flats built in the 1970s and 1980s. They spiced up an otherwise drab estate with personalities ranging from the magnificent to the terrible. Many of the mythical creatures that still lurk in remote places have been destroyed since then.
Enter the Whampoa dragon. The Whampoa dragon is one of a select few to have survived since its construction in 1973, when Bruce Lee’s final film, Enter the Dragon, was released. It was once a fountain in a much larger park, with the latter downsized by the construction of the Central Expressway in the early 1980s. It is located in front of Block 85 Whampoa Drive and was originally a pond that served as part of Kai Tak Airport Park.
By the mid-1990s, the three-storey high dragon had fallen into disrepair and was decommissioned as a water feature. The building was restored by the Moulmein-Kallang Town Council and the pond was subsequently filled. Water no longer shoots from this dragon of Whampoa, but it is still a popular meeting spot for locals.