Much potential in linking airport, cruise centre, HSR via rail

The Land Transport Authority should waste no time in linking the airport, Marina Bay Cruise Centre and the upcoming high-speed rail (HSR) terminus in Jurong via rail to unlock potential opportunities that will improve both the economy and overall travelling experience here (Changi's T5 likely to be served by 2 MRT lines; March 6, and Singapore sets sights on fly-cruise tourism; March 7).

Minimal stops, perhaps at Buona Vista and Paya Lebar stations, should be introduced for such a connection so that it will not only encourage Singaporeans to use it for their daily commute, but also attract visitors to fly in and out of Singapore.

The trains should be equipped with dedicated baggage storage space.

Given the proximity of the cruise centre and the HSR terminus to business districts, these locations could also offer check-in services so visitors can spend more time exploring the city without lugging their bags along.

Travellers pressed for time would no longer need to depend solely on taxis. The rail link would also alleviate pressure on the MRT lines.

The new stations would also give taxis alternative pick-up locations and shorten queues at the airport.

Taxi drivers are then able to make more frequent trips because of the shorter distances.

With faster travelling time and more comfort, the rail link would raise passenger satisfaction and, over time, encourage the use of public transport, resulting in a lower carbon footprint from cars.

The rail link between the three major transport nodes will help Singapore realise its status as the regional hub of South-east Asia and enable it to continue to compete with other cities.

Andrew Aw Zhenlong

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 11, 2017, with the headline 'Much potential in linking airport, cruise centre, HSR via rail'. Print Edition | Subscribe