Going car-lite requires infrastructure and soft measures

We thank Mr Lawrence Loh Kiah Muan and Mr Liew Yeng Chee for their letters ("Go car-lite? Have proper infrastructure in place first"; last Thursday and "Entice S'poreans with more efficient public transport"; last Friday, respectively) on the key findings released by the Centre for Liveable Cities (CLC) and the Urban Land Institute (ULI) in a joint research study titled "Creating Liveable Cities through Car-lite Urban Mobility".

The joint study identified 10 ideas to prepare cities around the world for a sustainable and car-lite future.

The idea that Mr Loh and Mr Liew made reference to in their letters - "put a stop to cheap and easy parking" - was one of the 10 ideas recommended by the study, and was suggested with the aim of encouraging cities to optimise land use and promote car-lite urban mobility.

The other ideas include an expansion of public transport amenities and enhancing the experiences of people with improved street design.

We agree with Mr Loh and Mr Liew on the importance of providing commuters with alternative mobility options that are attractive and convenient, in place of driving.

Over the past few years, the Government has put out a comprehensive programme, including ramping up the MRT network, enhancing the bus network as well as building more cycling paths in our estates and towns. These are necessary steps to making the car-lite future viable.

Beyond infrastructure, urban and transport policies as well as mindset changes contribute towards cities' efforts in promoting sustainable urban mobility.

These soft measures work hand in hand with the hardware of city planning to create a conducive urban environment for alternative mobility options, such as walking and cycling, and making non-car-based modes our preferred mobility choices.

A full set of the 10 key ideas can be accessed at http://www.clc.gov.sg/ Publications/books-creating- liveable-cities-through-car-lite- urban-mobility.htm

Limin Hee (Dr)

Director (Research) and Project Co-lead

Centre for Liveable Cities

Ministry of National Development

Scott Dunn

Council Member of Urban Land Institute Singapore and Project Co-lead

Urban Land Institute

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 20, 2016, with the headline 'Going car-lite requires infrastructure and soft measures'. Print Edition | Subscribe