SINGAPORE - Residents in Bukit Panjang will now be able to get around more seamlessly, as nearly every street in the town has a cycling path, with 8.5km of new paths launched on Saturday.
This brings the total distance of cycling paths and park connectors in Bukit Panjang to almost 16km, said the Land Transport Authority (LTA).
With the expanded network, residents will now be able to walk or cycle to three community centres, Bukit Panjang Hawker Centre and Market and shopping malls such as Bukit Panjang Plaza and Hillion Mall.
The paths also connect to Bukit Panjang MRT station and all eight LRT stations in the area, said LTA.
The new paths are linked to existing park connectors and parks too.
At the launch event on Saturday morning held at Bangkit Court Multi-Purpose Hall, Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan said that residents can also access the neighbouring town of Choa Chua Kang and the Rail Corridor, which stretches from Kranji in the north to Tanjong Pagar in the south.
“What it means for residents of Bukit Panjang is that from here, you can go to all the places you need within the town, go to the neighbouring town, take the long trail to Kranji or Tanjong Pagar or come along Bukit Timah Canal to the Singapore Botanic Gardens,” said Dr Balakrishnan, who is also an MP for Holland-Bukit Timah GRC.
He emphasised the importance of graciousness and safety as the paths are shared among various users.
“We have to share this wonderful network with one another – fellow cyclists, motorists and pedestrians. The better we can develop this etiquette of graciousness and consideration of one another’s safety and welfare, the better it will be,” he added.
Dr Balakrishnan and Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Transport Baey Yam Keng cycled along a 5.3km route on Saturday morning.
With the new paths, a resident living in Senja will be able to cycle to Zhenghua Nature Park in less than 10 minutes, said LTA.
To enhance first- and last-mile connectivity, LTA also added bicycle parking facilities at Pending, Segar and Senja LRT stations.
In addition, 17 signalised pedestrian crossings have been widened and two bicycle crossings added to make the roads safer for users.
With the completion of cycling paths in Bukit Panjang, there are now 11 Housing Board towns with cycling path networks.
The other 10 towns are Ang Mo Kio, Bedok, Changi-Simei, Jurong Lake District, Pasir Ris, Punggol, Sembawang, Taman Jurong, Tampines and Yishun.
LTA’s goal is to provide cycling paths in every HDB town and bring the cycling network here to 1,300km by 2030.
Accountant Tom Hoo, 33, said that cycling is his main mode of transport within Bukit Panjang, where he has been a resident for 25 years.
“Whether it’s to meet my friends who live nearby, go play tennis or do some marketing, I prefer to cycle than take the bus as it’s quicker,” said Mr Hoo.
“I used to cycle on regular footpaths, but it’s great that we started having cycling paths. Cyclists and pedestrians are on separate paths so it’s definitely safer for everyone.”