Thursday 26 December 2013

LTA ramps up effort to get people to take up cycling

By Feng Zengkun, The Straits Times, 25 Dec 2013

CYCLISTS in Aljunied are testing out a new ramp for pushing bicycles across overhead bridges.

The Land Transport Authority (LTA) has installed the system on one bridge near the area's MRT station and park connector network, and will monitor its effectiveness.

If successful, more of such bicycle-wheeling ramps could be installed across Singapore, it said.

Typically, several overhead bridges in Singapore have grooved slopes or small ramps running beside the steps. But some cyclists complain that these are sometimes difficult to use as they are narrow, and the bridges' railings can get in the way of the bicycles' handlebars.

Parliamentary Secretary for Transport Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim said in a Facebook post yesterday that he hoped the new design will make it more convenient for cyclists.

Mr Francis Chu, co-founder of cycling group LoveCyclingSG, said several bridges along the park connector route from Bishan to Kallang could benefit from the new ramp.

These bridges were meant for pedestrians and do not have ramps, he said.

"Ordinary cyclists usually have less expensive, heavier bicycles that may be difficult to carry up the bridges, especially for some women, children and the elderly," said the 53-year-old.

He added that the ramp could also be installed in overhead bridges located away from traffic light crossings.

The new design is part of efforts here to encourage more people to take up cycling.

Two networks of cycling paths were completed in Tampines and Sembawang earlier this year, with more set to be rolled out in Marina Bay, Yishun, Pasir Ris, Taman Jurong and Changi Simei by 2015.

By 2020, cyclists can expect around 190km of paths for them.

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