SINGAPORE — The Land Transport Authority (LTA) announced on Thursday (12 Jan) that new cycling paths will be built in seven towns under the next phase of its Islandwide Cycling Network (ICN) programme.
Residents and active mobility users in Geylang, Hougang, Kaki Bukit, Marine Parade, Potong Pasir, Sengkang and Serangoon can look forward to having more comprehensive cycling path networks which connect them to key amenities such as transport nodes, neighbourhood centres and schools in their neighbourhoods, as well as improved cycling links between towns when these projects are progressively completed from 2024.
LTA has called for a tender for the construction of the new cycling paths. To cater to the planned infrastructure, existing footpaths are expected to be widened to create more space for walking and cycling.
Due to space constraints in these mature, built-up towns, repurposing of road space and adjustments to facilities such as drains, bus stops and staircases may be needed. Thus, LTA said it will work closely with other agencies to assess the technical feasibility for these options and engage other relevant stakeholders ahead of any changes.
Unveiled in 2020, the ICN programme aims to accelerate and improve active mobility connectivity and infrastructure across Singapore and expand our cycling path network to span some 1,300km by 2030. When realised, this will allow 8 in 10 HDB residents to be within minutes of their nearest cycling path network, to support green commutes by Walk Cycle and Ride.
More than 30km of cycling paths have been recently completed in Ang Mo Kio, Bishan, the Central Business District, Taman Jurong, Tampines and Toa Payoh, expanding the network to more than 530km today. Excluding the Central Business District, Singapore has 10 towns with cycling paths, including Bedok, Changi-Simei, Jurong Lake District, Pasir Ris, Punggol and Sembawang; works are currently in progress at in Bishan, Bukit Panjang, Choa Chu Kang, Toa Payoh and Woodlands.
To support active commutes, LTA is also implementing supporting infrastructure such as bicycle parking facilities. There are currently 254,000 bicycle parking spaces across the island and we will be providing 3,000 more bicycle parking lots at MRT stations by 2025. Other supporting infrastructure, such as bicycle crossings, wheeling ramps and map boards, will also be implemented. LTA will also continue with our education and outreach efforts to foster a safe, responsible and gracious active mobility culture in tandem with the infrastructural enhancements.
Mr Sitoh Yih Pin, MP for Potong Pasir, said more residents in his ward have been picking up cycling since the pandemic struck, and building up cycling infrastructure will support this trend.
Ms He Ting Ru, Assoc Prof Jamus Lim and Mr Louis Chua, MPs for Sengkang GRC, said they are delighted to hear that the LTA has called for a tender for the construction of new cycling paths in seven towns, including Sengkang.
“Many of our residents have already embraced the lower costs and convenience of cycling, particularly as most of Sengkang is within 2km of the MRT and the two riverside park connectors; although a number of them have shared their concerns on the current low density of cycling paths within the town. The new cycling paths would certainly be much appreciated by our residents.”
They added that they appreciate the LTA’s interest in engaging with relevant stakeholders ahead of any changes, and look forward to working closely with the LTA on the project, and to share their findings from the call for feedback last year.
This was raised again in March 2022 by Assoc Prof Lim in Parliament during the Ministry of Transport Committee Of Supply Debates, where he suggested that dedicated bike lanes will support commercial activity.
“Since cycling paths currently allow the use of powered vehicles, delivery riders that cannot ply foot paths, will have a safe alternative for their Personal Mobility Devices (PMDs). In Sengkang, such delivery riders and dedicated bike lanes seem like a win-win solution that will accommodate our many PMD users.” said Assoc Jamus Lim.