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Singapore first put giant television screens on busy shopping streets. Then came tiny TVs in elevators. Now there are televisions on the bus.

Digital TVs were put in 1,500 buses in Singapore in mid-February so busy commuters can keep up with their favorite news and entertainment shows, says Lee Yock Suan, the city-state's information minister.

The TVs were developed and installed by MediaCorp, Singapore's government-linked broadcasting company, as part of a $29 million digital television system called TVMobile.

TVMobile offers specially packaged 15-minute news and entertainment programs in English and Mandarin.

"The future is digital," Lee says. "In this brave new world we cannot afford to be left behind on the technological highway."

It costs more to get to Liberty, Ellis Island

The ferry ride to the Statue of Liberty got $1 more expensive this month, rising to $8 for the round-trip ride to the statue and Ellis Island from either Battery Park at the south tip of Manhattan or from Liberty State Park in Jersey City.

The $3 fare for children 17 years of age and under and the $6 fare for senior citizens 62 and above did not change. (For groups of 25 or more, the per-person rate increased to $7 from $6.) The National Park Service gave the operator of the shuttle, Circle Line-Statue of Liberty Ferry Inc., permission for the 14 percent increase, and cited increases in fuel, labor and other operating costs. It was the first price increase since 1994.

Nearly 5.7 million people visited the Statue of Liberty in 2000, according to the park service's public-use statistics office. February brought the second-lowest number of visitors, about 170,000. Peak visits to the monument came in July, about 725,000, and August, with 705,000 visitors.

The Statue of Liberty National Monument and the Ellis Island Immigration Museum are open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., with extended hours during summer. For additional information, call (212) 363-3200 or visit Web site The ferry service operates from both departure points daily from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Circle Line-Statue of Liberty Ferry can be reached at (212) 269-5755 or online at

Monument honors black Civil War soldier

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) -- A rare monument in the South honoring black Union soldiers has been largely forgotten over the years. That's about to change.

The granite statue of Sgt. William Carney, whose story was told in the movie "Glory" about the assault on a South Carolina fort, has been added to the Virginia Civil War Trails project, a network of more than 250 historic sites promoted to tourists.

The rifle-bearing figure of Carney is tucked in a corner of Elmwood Cemetery, where it towers above a few dozen small white marble tombstones of black soldiers and sailors who served in the Civil War or Spanish-American War.

Ticonderoga kicks off fort's campaign

TICONDEROGA (AP) -- Fort Ticonderoga plans to remind the world of its history with a series of expansion projects.

A key fortification in the French and Indian and Revolutionary wars, the fort was occupied at various times by the French, British and Americans over a 20-year period in the 1700s.

Fort officials will host a series of receptions from Washington, D.C., to Boston, said Edward Pell, president of the board of the Fort Ticonderoga Association.

A March 9 "Ticonderoga Ball" in New York City will kick off events that "bring Fort Ticonderoga to the world," Pell said.

The receptions will help generate the millions of dollars needed for the fort's building projects, said fort marketing director C. Walter Lender.

Projects began in November 1999, with the $630,000 rebuilding of the southwest bastion and $3 million renovation of the Kings Garden.

Reconstruction of the French Barracks began a year later as part of the $10 million Mars Education Center project. Construction on the center itself won't start for another year.

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