The latest move, announced on Saturday by Parliamentary Secretary for Health and Transport Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim, is part of the plan to provide all 26 HDB towns with a comprehensive cycling network of around 190km by 2020, so residents can cycle safely and easily to MRT stations and town centres.
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Read Dr Faishal's speech here:
I am happy to see so many of you gathered here today at the launch of the Sembawang cycling path network and ground-breaking of the Yishun cycling path network.
Cycling has become increasingly popular in Singapore in recent years, both for recreation and as a means of transport. More people are now incorporating cycling as part of their daily journeys to work, be it cycling to the MRT station or bus interchange, or for short trips within the housing estate to go to school, to the supermarket or to the community centre.
We want to do more to support such activities, because cycling is a healthy and environmentally friendly mode of transport. The Ministry of Transport launched the Land Transport Master Plan 2013 earlier this month, which described our plans to build a cycling path network of about 190 kilometres in HDB towns by 2020. Some of these intra-town networks will be connected together via the National Parks Board's (NParks) Park Connector Networks to create a comprehensive island-wide cycling path network that will reach over 700 kilometres in length over the next 15 years.
Sembawang and Yishun Cycling Path Networks
Sembawang and Yishun were among the first five towns under the National Cycling Plan announced in 2010 to have off-road cycling path networks. The towns were selected because of their strong cycling culture.
It took some time and effort by many here in the community to nurture this cycling culture. Today, we mark an important milestone in the promotion of cycling in Sembawang and Yishun, as well as the National Cycling Plan. Sembawang is now the second town to have a completed cycling path network, after Tampines completed theirs in June. Residents can now ride on another 3.6 kilometres of cycling paths, adding to the 7.1 kilometres of cycling paths built by the Town Council.
The cycling paths provide a safe environment for Sembawang residents to cycle to Sembawang MRT station, bus interchange and key amenity areas such as Sun Plaza, Sembawang Mart and Montreal Green Park. For example, instead of taking bus service 859, residents living along Admiralty Link now have the option of cycling to Sembawang Town Centre and parking their bicycles at the racks in front of Sembawang MRT station, before continuing their journeys on the MRT. Residents who are more adventurous can also ride safely on the new cycling path network and connect with the Park Connector Network to reach Woodlands and Yishun towns on their bicycles.
To further enhance the safety of cyclists and pedestrians in Sembawang Town and minimise conflicts between the two groups, we have introduced two mid-block bicycle crossings along Sembawang Way in front of Sembawang MRT, and along Canberra Road in front of Sembawang Mart. These crossings provide dedicated crossing space for pedestrians and cyclists so that cyclists can ride across the road when the 'Green Bicycle' signal is on.
In Yishun, we have also made good progress. We have completed the first 1.7 kilometres of cycling paths and we will start work on the remaining 13.8 kilometres. By 2015, Yishun residents can look forward to cycling safely to both Yishun and Khatib MRT stations, Yishun Bus Interchange, Khoo Teck Puat Hospital and other key activity areas such as Chong Pang Market.