SINGAPORE - A new road linking Punggol and Pasir Ris will allow residents to travel directly between the two towns, doing away with the need to go onto Tampines Expressway (TPE).
It will link Punggol Central to Pasir Ris Industrial Drive 1, and allow motorists to connect to Kallang-Paya Lebar Expressway (KPE) directly.
The project, whose completion date was not given, was announced on Saturday (March 26) by Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, an MP for Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC.
"There are quite a number of residents who commute between the two (towns). This will allow residents to travel to the two towns quickly and seamlessly without going onto the TPE," said Mr Teo, who is also Coordinating Minister for National Security.
On Saturday, Mr Teo, together with grassroots leaders and MPs of the GRC, officially opened a new 1km temporary slip road that connects motorists in Punggol directly to the KPE.
The slip road, which goes over Sungei Serangoon, is expected to ease peak-hour traffic jams along the expressway entrances at Punggol Road and Punggol Way, which motorists had to use previously to go onto the TPE, so they could link to the KPE.
It is an interim measure before a project to expand the KPE/TPE interchange is completed in the third quarter of 2019. The works will include building a new link road to Punggol Central, three new vehicular bridges and a new flyover across the TPE.
Mr Teo said the new slip road and the future KPE/TPE interchange will benefit not only residents of Punggol, but also those living in Rivervale in Sengkang.
As many residents there use the entrance to the KPE through Buangkok East Drive, the new slip road will help ease traffic there, he said.
To maintain a smooth traffic flow, only cars will be allowed to go onto the new slip road to the KPE, said the Land Transport Authority, and heavy vehicles will continue to use Punggol Road and Punggol Way.
Mr Teo said the new slip road is "one small step" to bringing better transport to residents. Public transport was also being improved, he said, with the adding of bus services, including some that take residents directly to the city centre.
Punggol residents welcomed the new slip road, saying it will cut the duration of their commutes.
Mr Ng Joo Hai, 40, a test analyst, said: "It can probably save me about 10 to 15 minutes in the mornings. It's a direct exit to the KPE and will allow me to avoid the heavy traffic in Punggol Road."