Who's behind the Changi Jurassic Mile?

October 2020

The project team with Minister for Transport Mr Ong Ye Kung at the official opening of the Changi Airport Connector and Changi Jurassic Mile on 11 October 2020


Delighting passengers and visitors has always been, and continues to be, at the heart of what Changi does. Adding the latest (and most exciting!) dimension to the airport experience is the Changi Airport Connector. Linking Changi Airport to East Coast Park and the rest of Singapore’s Park Connector Network for the first time, the 3.5-km cycling and jogging path is also home to the Changi Jurassic Mile, Singapore’s newest and largest permanent outdoor display of life-sized dinosaurs.

With more than 20 different pre-historic creatures displayed over one kilometre at the Jurassic Mile, Changi Journeys (CJs) sits down with Delfine Ong from Changi Airport Group’s Experience Creation team to understand how the mammoth creatures were created and built, and the thinking behind the attraction.


CJs: Firstly, why dinosaurs?

Delfine: When the Changi Airport Connector was built, the 1km stretch leading to the Park Connector Network runs along the perimeter fencing of the airport. It looked almost like a prison wall. It occurred to us that it also looked quite like a dinosaur enclosure with its high fence. Looking at the natural terrain at the adjacent Tanah Merah Country Club, we thought the area was a perfect ‘habitat’ for life-sized dinosaurs, which we can use to create the very first walkthrough dinosaur experience in Singapore’s nature. And that was how Jurassic Mile was born!

Dinosaurs have always been a great source of fascination among both the young and young-at-heart. Through the Chang Airport Connector and Jurassic Mile, we hope to bring the airport experience up yet another notch, following the opening of Jewel Changi Airport last year.  


CJs: How were the dinosaurs created and what was the production process like?

Delfine: All the dinosaur displays were produced and manufactured locally. We worked with a local company whom we had partnered with in previous projects, such as A Frozen Wonderland at Changi last year, and A Wizarding World Holiday at Changi the year before.


The dinosaur displays are hand-painted in vibrant colours to appeal to all ages, especially young children. 


To create the dinosaurs, we first researched their physical traits such as size and colour before doing up a 3D model of each. We wanted the experience at Jurassic Mile to be immersive, so every dinosaur exhibit was specially hand-crafted and hand-painted by craftsmen based on their life-sized dimensions, down to the texture of its skin, to make the dinosaurs appear as real as possible.

Once a 3D model has been developed, it is carved and cut into shape using foam blocks. Next, metal poles are inserted into the foam to hold the structure together, ensuring the dinosaur can stand on its own despite its massive size.

Thereafter, we coat it with fiberglass. This helps to keep it waterproof, so it can withstand the outdoor weather conditions at Jurassic Mile.

The last step is to hand-paint the body of the dinosaur displays. When choosing the colours, we intentionally chose to incorporate some pop colours to make some of the dinosaurs less fierce, so that they will not scare the very young kids.

The entire process to create all the dinosaurs took about nine months.  


CJs: How were the dinosaurs transported and installed at Jurassic Mile? 


Due to its huge size, installation of the Brachiosaurus dinosaur exhibit had to be done in parts. 


Delfine: The dinosaurs weigh from 400kg to 1 tonne each.

Due to the scale of each dinosaur, they were transported in parts and pieced together at Jurassic Mile. They are then bolted down to the ground and secured to concrete blocks beneath their feet. The largest dinosaur display is 17m wide and 5m tall, taking 15 men to get it installed!


CJs: Were there any challenges faced by your team during the process and how did your team overcome them?

Delfine: Jurassic Mile is the largest outdoor installation that Changi Airport has done so far and working with outdoor conditions brought a very different set of challenges from what we were used to. Our team had to work with iguanas, monitor lizards and all sorts of insects in addition to the weather elements. We also had to work closely with Tanah Merah Country Club to install the dinosaurs along the path as the dinosaurs were just too huge!

With the unwavering dedication of everyone on the team, we are very proud to have our first dinosaur installation in Singapore. We hope that the unique appeal of Jurassic Mile will make the Changi Airport Connector a compelling outdoor destination for both local residents during this Covid-19 period, and for travellers when travel resumes.   

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