Public Transport Council (PTC) has released the result of its annual Public Transport Customer Satisfaction Survey (PTCSS) in October 2017, across 22 train stations and 25 bus stations / bus stops, which states that commuters’ satisfaction with public transport decreased from 96.4 percent in 2016 to 94.5 percent in 2017 due to a dip in satisfaction levels for MRT services.
According to the council, the mean satisfaction score for public transport, on the other hand, saw a slight improvement from 7.6 out of 10 in 2016 to 7.7 last year due to the sustained improvements in ratings for bus services.
The survey notes that commuters’ satisfaction level with bus services for 2017 remained at 96.7 percent. The mean satisfaction score rose from 7.6 in 2016 to 7.9 in 2017, driven by higher ratings across all the service attributes.
This is the fifth consecutive year of improvement in bus satisfaction ratings.
PTC states that the overall increase in the mean satisfaction scores across the eight key service attributes are likely attributed to several factors, including the successful completion of the implementation of the five-year Bus Service Enhancement Programme (BSEP) in 2017.
"Service levels were raised further with the transition to the Bus Contracting Model in 2016, which included the full roll-out of the Bus Service Reliability Framework. Taken together, the findings suggest that commuters now enjoy more frequent and timelier bus arrivals, enhanced bus connectivity and more comfortable rides," it said.
However, the council stated that after three years of improvement, satisfaction with MRT services fell from 96.0 percent to 91.8 percent with the mean satisfaction score also dipped slightly from 7.6 in 2016 to 7.5 in 2017.
"This was largely driven by the lower scores in the areas of reliability, waiting time, comfort, travel time, and service information," it said.
The council stressed that the decrease in the mean satisfaction score for MRT services follows the 7 October 2017 tunnel flooding incident between Bishan and Braddell MRT stations, as well as the teething delays experienced by commuters from testing of the new signalling system on the North-South Line (NSL) from March 2017.
"With the teething issues from re-signalling largely resolved and the implementation of extended engineering hours for the North-South and East-West Lines since December 2017 to accelerate asset renewal and intensify maintenance work, commuters should experience more reliable train services soon," it added.
Amidst the overall decrease in ratings for MRT, PTC said that one positive finding was the improvement in scores for station accessibility, which could be due to the opening of 20 new stations on the Tuas West Extension (TWE) and the Downtown Line 3 (DTL3) last year, yet another step closer to the Government’s goal of having 8 in 10 households within a 10-minute walk from a station by 2030.
In addition, it noted that under LTA’s Walk2Ride programme, the additional 200 km of covered linkways island-wide by 2018 connecting public transport nodes to nearby schools, public amenities and residential developments, will further contribute to the improvement in station accessibility.