Move heavy vehicle parks away from old estates

The issue of heavy vehicle parks is in the news again (Residents call for brakes on heavy vehicle park; May 22).

The Ministry of National Development says that about 74 per cent of heavy vehicle parking spaces are privately operated and located in industrial estates.

The remaining 26 per cent are managed by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) and the Housing Board in the form of temporary heavy vehicle parks located within or at the fringes of residential areas.

These temporary parking spaces are meant to be progressively phased out or relocated.

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But one such heavy vehicle park in the Teck Whye neighbourhood has been there since 1989.

There are no green buffer strips, and noise, pollution and safety concerns affect residents daily.

Indeed, have there been efforts made to relocate existing heavy vehicle parks from older estates?

Last year, the URA called a tender to study the travel and parking patterns of heavy vehicles for better allocation of parking spaces (URA to study heavy vehicles' movements; June 4, 2016).

I wonder what came of it.

I urge the agencies to explore private-public partnerships on the development of heavy vehicle parks away from residential estates.

Meanwhile, the National Environment Agency should step up the enforcement of anti-idling laws, or mandate the use of anti-idling technologies or solar-powered auxiliary power units on heavy vehicles powered by combustion engines.

The issue of heavy vehicle parks in dense residential neighbourhoods is a longstanding one and needs managing.

Loong Chik Tong

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 03, 2017, with the headline 'Move heavy vehicle parks away from old estates'. Print Edition | Subscribe