Everyday Traffic

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Blog Revival

It's been a long time - almost a year! - since Traffic Lights last posted anything here so shame on us!

But really, it's not like we have forgotten about this blog. The past year has been pretty busy for us and we've been lucky to work on some very interesting projects. And interesting projects certainly make us question the convention in traffic engineering and transport planning! So if time permits, our plan is to briefly describe and discuss some of these.

We also decided that it will be useful to stay up-to-date with local transport policies and issues. So what we intend to do is also to collate articles pertaining to Singaporean land transport and re-publish them here.

Hopefully, the blog can then incite some discussion about transport planning!

that we will briefly discuss about here if time permits.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Safe Kids USA - Safety Saves - Bike Safety

Child or adult, as long as you're riding a bicycle, he/she should be wearing a properly fit helmet. Do not take it for granted that just because it isn't the 'law' imposed by our Singapore Traffic Police yet, you may assume it is safe to go without a helmet.
Don't take chances, and please.... spread the word.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Jetsons

Oh for the heck of it.... here's an intro to the Jetsons. Think traffic and you'll observe car-pooling (4 pax in a car! woohoo!), problems and delays caused by pick-up and drop-off lay-bys (yeah, individual capsules to eject each passenger), parking issues (how about a briefcase SUV?)
Don't we all want to solve our traffic problems with solutions like these?
Are we far from it?

SkyCab Project green transportation system.

This is a good idea; almost utopian and perhaps very futuristic and something that you'd see from a Jetsons cartoon show. Environmentally-friendly: yes, but is it viable, economical, and feasible?
Many cities are already facing problems with operating and maintaining public transport systems. Some cities can't even get their price mechanisms right. The commuter suffers.
To install and implement a system like the Skycab, a huge investment needs to be made for infrastructure, then another huge cost component must be factored for operations and maintenance.
Unless a big investor comes into the scene, it is very difficult to maintain this system with only a ridership of 9000 per hour.
What are your thoughts?

Thursday, October 29, 2009

NHTSA Bicycle Safety Tips For Adults

This is a very useful and educational video. Some may say that it seems to be commonsense, but trust me - accidents DO happen. It never hurts to be refreshed.... and practice definitely makes perfect! Happy Safe Cycling!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

In The News: ERP Charges To Be Increased At 3 Gantries

Well what do you know? So swiftly after the report that fewer Singaporeans take public transport, comes the announcement from the Land Transport Authority (LTA) that Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) charges are going up at selected gantries!
"ERP rates at 3 gantries to be raised from Nov 2

The Land Transport Authority (LTA) said Tuesday ERP rates at three gantries
will go up from November 2.

It will cost a dollar to pass through the gantry along Ayer Rajah
Expressway between 8am and 8.30am, an increment of 50 cents.

ERP rate for the Eastbound ECP gantry at Marina South and the one on the
slip road from Ophir Road will go up by a dollar to S$3.00 between 6.30pm and

The rates for the other gantries will remain unchanged.

LTA said the next ERP review will take place in November for the December
school holidays."

-ChannelNewsAsia, 27 October 2009
Link: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1013964/1/.html

So are you still going to travel by car? What is it with Singaporeans and car ownership anyway?

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

In The News: Fewer Take Public Transport

The 2nd World Roads Conference was inaugurated yesterday, with an address given by the Minister of Transport, Mr Raymond Lim. In his speech, he revealed that according to a travel survey conducted by the Land Transport Authority (LTA) in 2008, fewer people in Singapore are taking public transport.

Less People Taking Public Transport

Less people are taking public transport and more switching to private cars, if the latest numbers are anything to go by.

A 2008 travel survey conducted by the Land Transport Authority (LTA) showed that the proportion of people taking car journeys have increased to 31 per cent, as opposed to 27 per cent share in 2004.

Two strategies have been identified to increase the number of people taking public transportation: 1) investing in rail network and; 2) reducing vehicle growth rate, Singapore's Transport Minister Raymond Lim said in his opening speech for the second World Roads conference.

Mr Lim said ideally there would be a doubling of the existing rail network by 2020, as well as significant capacity enhancement in existing lines with higher train frequencies.

By 2020, Singapore's rail density will be "comparable" to New York and London today. The MRT will be more accessible to more people. Mr Lim also added that there will be an MRT station within five minutes' walk.

The vehicle population growth rate has also been reduced from 3 per cent to 1.5 per cent a year, and this will be reassessed again in 2012.

Several improvements have been made to increase the attractiveness of taking public transport, said the Transport Minister.

Expansion of normal bus lanes and full day bus lanes have improved bus speeds. Bus services are now more frequent as well.

Public commuters are already feeling the improvements. In a customer satisfaction survey conducted in 2008, 89,5 per cent said they were satisfied with public transport services, an increase of 3 per cent from 2007.

He also added: "As we expanded Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) to more roads last year, the traffic conditions of these roads have improved correspondingly."

Traffic speeds in the CBD area - where targeted road pricing measures were introduced - increased from 18kph to an optimal range of 20-30kph.”

- AsiaOne Motoring News, 26 Oct 2009

Link: http://www.asiaone.com/Motoring/News/Story/A1Story20091026-176032.html

Needless to say, many netizens quickly responded to this speech with comments like “Sounds like another excuse to raise ERP charges again...” or “Impossible! Cos the trains are always packed with people!”.

Their rash reactions to this speech are expected, but the matter here really is: why? Why are Singaporeans still not choosing to commute by public transport? Why are we switching to cars?

Plans are in place to improve public transport in Singapore, according to the Land Transport Master Plan. But if Singaporeans continue to shun public transport and if we do not find out the reason behind this trend, it’ll be an awful waste of effort indeed once everything in the plan is achieved.

I hope the Land Transport Authority can reveal more information on the travel survey and hopefully identify the reason behind our poor travel mode choice.

I certainly hope this is not the cause of it!