Photo: Wikipedia

PTC submits second advisory report to Minister of Transport

The Public Transport Council (PTC) has submitted its second Advisory Report themed “Conversation and Connecting with SG Commuters” to the Minister for Transport Khaw Boon Wan.

“The frank conversations have been captured through PTC’s engagement with over 11,000 SG Commuters of diverse profiles, and through multiple channels (in-depth interviews, focus group discussions and surveys). The various recommendations made in the report are formed from these rich conversations,” the press statement said.

The report follows through from PTC’s inaugural Advisory Report published in August 2016, which contained 17 out of 21 recommendations for an improved public transport experience for all commuters.

PTC stated that the Government studied these recommendations and several initiatives are already being implemented progressively and to allow for a more meaningful and in-depth study, the second Advisory Report focuses primarily on our rail commuters.

“Through our conversations with them, we found that overall, SG Commuters remain satisfied with their rail journey experiences, and are appreciative of the service staff’s help during their day-to-day journey. SG Commuters want public transport to be inclusive for the vulnerable or commuters with special needs. They want to be active participants in shaping their rail experiences and helping fellow commuters,” the council stated.

According to PTC, its surveys found that while public confidence in Singapore’s public transport system had dipped following the two rail incidents, commuters remained positive that the Government and PTOs are doing their best to improve service for commuters and they are also aware of and appreciate these efforts.

The council said that the report examines and, “in a way celebrates SG Commuters’ resilience, willingness to be engaged and co-create solutions to improve their rail experience.”

According to PTC, it has made recommendations to further improve the commuter experience through feedback gathered as part of the ‘Heart Zone’ and ‘[email protected]’ co-creation initiatives, and

PTC notes that it knows that commuters are keen to take stronger ownership of the solutions to promote a more caring commuting culture on the public transport system and said, “We see room to grow these platforms and opportunities for commuters to help one another, and make travelling on our public transport more pleasant,”

In this regard, PTC said that it will expand co-creation initiatives in collaboration with two other hospitals and public transport operators in 2018.

According to PTC, Ng Teng Fong General Hospital and Tan Tock Seng Hospital will take on the ‘Heart Zone’ and ‘[email protected]’ concepts and partner SMRT at Jurong East MRT station and Novena MRT station respectively. Both hospitals are working out the details of the two initiatives, scheduled to be launched by 2Q 2018.

PTC said that the co-creation initiative at Outram Park MRT Station will continue through collaboration with SBS Transit, SMRT, Singapore General Hospital, Singapore National Eye Centre and National Heart Centre Singapore.

It also said that to enable a more inclusive public transport experience, PTC also engaged the Singapore Association of the Visually Handicapped (SAVH), and The Singapore Association for the Deaf. From these interactions, PTC found that this group’s travel experience could be improved through more public education, better customer service, greater information accessibility, and improved design of the older MRT stations such as more consistency in tonal contrast for steps.

“Additionally, “Mobility as a Service” (MaaS) is an innovative transport solution that has great potential to enhance the door-to-door experience for the wider commuting public, including those with special needs,” it said, adding that PTC and LTA will explore how the implementation of MaaS by private sector providers can enhance commuting experience for SG commuters.

PTC said that it engaged SG Commuters face-to-face. Among them, the report features several individuals such as Madam Lydia @ Hamidah Abdul who lives in Bukit Gombak; Mr Dan Li who works in the western part of Singapore; Mr Neo Hock Sik who is Deaf; and Mr Francis Tay who has low vision and uses a white cane when commuting.

Mr Richard Magnus, Chairman of the Public Transport Council, said, “Through our extensive ground engagements, we found that the SG Commuters are by and large reasonable, responsive, resilient and appreciative. Commuters have shared with us their wish for the public transport system to be inclusive of the vulnerable or special needs commuters.  They want to be part of the solution to improve their rail journey experiences. We are heartened by this and PTC will continue to listen to commuters for the public good of our transport system.”