Singapore River has a very rich history. It used to be the river mouth for trade activities. Many bum boats will carry goods from bigger ships in the sea to this river. Here the coolies/workers (see earlier post) will carry the goods from the bum boats to the warehouse, etc.
The river used to be dirty and smelly cause of the congestion of boats but since the big clean up in 1977, the river is so much cleaner and not smelly anymore. It is a beautiful view to look with all the tall buildings beside the river. For more information of Singapore River, you can view them here.