Budget 2013: Minister Lui responds to Workers' Party MP on bus services

An exchange between Workers' Party MP Lee Li Lian (Punggol East) and Transport Minister Lui Tuck Yew on the availability of bus services in Punggol East culminated in Mr Lui saying that it is "not possible or desirable" to have buses plying "every crescent or every drive".

Ms Lee spoke on Tuesday about the lack of trunk and feeder bus services that run into Rivervale Crescent, within the ward she represents.

On Wednesday, Mr Lui - thinking that her point was the lack of bus services running through Punggol East - set the record straight. He said there were five services that run through the constituency and another 11 that run along its boundaries.

"Our estimate based on all these is that about 90 per cent of the HDB blocks in Punggol East are within 200m of either an LRT station or a bus stop or both," Mr Lui told Parliament.

Ms Lee then clarified that her complaint concerned Rivervale Crescent. She said that she had sent an appeal letter to the Land Transport Authority on March 9 but has not received a proper reply.

Mr Lui said he had misunderstood her. He then added that the LTA has been asked to beef up bus services in parts of Punggol where more Built-to-Order flats are being constructed.

On why it was not possible to have buses ply every crescent and drive, Mr Lui said: "If we do so, we make the route more circuitous...sometimes there is a need to walk to the nearest bus stop."

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