New grant for workplaces to promote active mobility

Coraltree Residents Network chairman Andy Ho (centre) and Parc Terraces Residents Network chairman John Yap talking to a personal mobility device user in Punggol about using the device safely and responsibly, as part of the Active Mobility Patrol sch
Coraltree Residents Network chairman Andy Ho (centre) and Parc Terraces Residents Network chairman John Yap talking to a personal mobility device user in Punggol about using the device safely and responsibly, as part of the Active Mobility Patrol scheme.ST PHOTO: KHALID BABA

More money will be given to help workplaces build facilities such as showers and changing rooms to encourage people to walk, run or cycle to work, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) said yesterday.

The authority's new Active Commute Grant, aimed at promoting active mobility, will provide a subsidy of up to 80 per cent of construction costs for end-of-trip features in more workplaces.

These facilities include showers, lockers, changing rooms and signs directing employees to these amenities. Grants are capped at $80,000 per development.

Replacing the earlier Travel Smart Grant, which was launched in 2017, the new grant is set to make it easier for more people to freshen up after choosing the healthier - and, greener - way of starting their day at work.

An LTA spokesman said 13 applications had been made under the Travel Smart Grant scheme, and it was still evaluating these claims.

The new grant is an extension of the previous policy to more buildings. For example, light and general industrial developments can now apply for the grant, while the previous benefit was restricted to offices.

Referring to LTA's new move at a separate event in Punggol yesterday, Senior Minister of State for Transport, and Communications and Information Janil Puthucheary said he hopes more people will consider mixed modes of transport in their commutes.

"What that means is you can walk to the MRT station and then maybe at the other end you could cycle. We accept it's going to be a mix of public transport and active mobility," he said.

"But if you don't encourage active mobility, public transport is not easy for everybody to use from door to door. That's what we are trying to do - close the gap," Dr Janil added.

 
 
 
 

He was in Punggol to join Active Mobility Patrol teams in their patrol, which seek to ensure that users of shared paths abide by the rules.

Applications for the Active Commute Grant are now open and will close on June 30, 2021.

Developments already undergoing simple retrofitting works can also apply for LTA's co-funding retroactively.

In recent years, the Government has invested millions of dollars to promote walking and cycling as alternative modes of transport, especially when it comes to first-and last-mile options.

In August, Senior Minister of State for Transport Lam Pin Min said the Government plans to have, by 2030, three times the current 440km network of cycling paths.

The aim is to make active mobility "an important part of the transport ecosystem", an LTA spokesman said previously in response to queries from The Straits Times.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on November 03, 2019, with the headline 'New grant for workplaces to promote active mobility'. Print Edition | Subscribe