The Public Transport Council (PTC) has released an inaugural report on Monday (1 August), detailing suggestions for the improvement of public transport for commuters.
PTC plans on integrating the suggestions and recommendations with the evolving of public transport governance, planning, and design in order to improve it
The report is a result of a six-months research in the form of public engagement which includes 44 in-depth interviews, 51 focus group discussion and a commuter survey of 2,132 respondents. A 12-month trend analysis was also conducted on the commuters' view on social media, all focused on how to provide better facilities based on the current experiences of commuters.
The report covers four main themes on the recommendations:
- Making public transport inclusive for all;
- Providing more and clearer information to commuters;
- Improving the design of the public transport system;
- and deepening the human touch on public transport.
One example given of the recommendations is that PTC had already asked Land Transport Authority (LTA) on June 2016, to provide ways to safely secure strollers on board public buses. Currently, there are a policy stating that strollers must be folded onboard, but this has poses several inconveniences for the parents. The problem is currently being studied by LTA and the transport operators.
Other than parents with little kids, PTC also saw the need to improve the public transport for commuters with special needs. It recommends special training for taxi drivers to serve wheelchair users better, along with etiquette training and sensitivity training.
There are also several considerations on the redesigning of infrastructures, such as installing new electronic screens on buses that display important information for commuters, and redesigning seats on future bus stops so that they would be more comfortable for waiting passengers.
PTC chairman Richard Magnus said that one of the intentions of this report is to emphasize that public transport stakeholders should remain connected to the commuters. He also said that the suggestions are to be integrated into larger plans and development for a better public transport system for all.
Meanwhile, Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan said he approves and supports PTC’s focus on commuters in one of his blog posts.
“We exist because of the commuters. Fulfilling their needs is our mission,” he said. He also noted that Singapore’s population is currently aging, and has the need to raise its birth rate. Therefore the ministry has the obligation to provide the best environment to “bring up children and for our seniors”.