Singapore People’s Party release press statement to express their concerns over the LTA’s satellite ERP system.
Our concerns over LTA’s satellite ERP system: costs, surveillance (SPP statement)
We note that the LTA is expected to call a tender for the installation of the next generation of electronic road pricing (ERP) system, which would be satellite-based, in the first half of next year.
The LTA shared that trial shows satellite-based system likely to be feasible in Singapore. We would like the LTA to show the results to the public and justify the success and accuracy of the system. This is not a small matter, as Singaporeans can expect ERP coverage to be expanded and ERP charges to be increased.
We would also concerned that the use satellite technology to track vehicles will be used for unwarranted surveillance. Given this potential intrusion on privacy, this matter must clear Parliament.
The government’s focus should be improving MRT and bus services first. Public transport improvements must be the priority. If Singaporeans trust an efficiently-run system, as defined by frequency, adequacy of capacity and a sustainable price, the car population will automatically fall. As an example, we still hear complaints from the public that the waiting time for MRT trains during peak hours are sometimes still over 6 minutes, which is behind most major city metro systems.
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LTA announced that a new satellite-based ERP system for Singapore is feasible in Singapore after they completed an 18 month trial period along Woodlands Avenue 12 between 2011 and 2012.
Such a satellite-based ERP system would replace the existing gantries and charge road users according to the distance they travel on congested roads instead.
It is expected that the LTA will open up the project for tenders by as early as 2014 but it is still not expected to be widely implemented for several years while it is still developed.
Four operators were actively involved in the trial, they are Kapsch TrafficCom, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Engine System Asia & NCS, ST Electronics (Info-Comm Systems) & IBM Singapore and Watchdata Technologies & Beijing Watchdata System. Four of the companies received about $1million in funding to help develop the new ERP system.