It will become easier to go car-lite in the city, with the transformation of Bencoolen Street, and as the Government lines up a series of other infrastructural projects and initiatives to make walking, cycling, and riding public transport more pleasant and conducive.
A Car-Lite Bencoolen Street
Bencoolen Street has been revitalised, with two of the four original car lanes converted into wider walking spaces for pedestrians, and a dedicated cycling path. Pedestrians can now enjoy the lush greenery along the open walkway, and take comfortable walks using the sheltered link-ways connecting various transport nodes to nearby developments, such as Manulife Centre and Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA).
To inject vibrancy into the streetscape, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) and Land Transport Authority (LTA) collaborated with students and alumni from NAFA to design and install a series of unique benches that line Bencoolen Street today. More than 125 new bicycle parking lots have also been installed at key destinations along the street.
The dedicated cycling path along Bencoolen Street will connect to existing and future cycling routes all over Singapore. The Bencoolen Street cycling path will link up to Queenstown-City to the west, Bishan-City and the North South Corridor to the north, and the Central Area cycling network to the south. The Central Area cycling network extends from the Marina Bay area, and connects to the eastern part of Singapore via the East Coast Park.
Other Car-Lite Projects
Besides the revitalised Bencoolen Street, similar enhancement works at the Civic District to make it a more walkable and people-friendly precinct have also been completed this month. The pedestrianisation of one side of Anderson Bridge now creates a gateway into the arts and cultural precinct, where pedestrian-friendly public spaces have earlier been created by reclaiming road space at Connaught Drive, Empress Place, Old Parliament Lane and St Andrew’s Road. These enhancements support the car-lite vision and have enabled large-scale outdoor events, such as Car-Free Sunday SG, to be hosted for the public to enjoy.
Coleman Street, Armenian Street and Waterloo Street will also be transformed in the next few years. Road lanes will be reclaimed to make walking and cycling a more enjoyable experience. These works are expected to commence next year and will be progressively completed by 2020.
- Part of Armenian Street will be fully pedestrianised and transformed into an urban park by the National Parks Board.
- Coleman Street and Waterloo Street will each have one vehicular lane reclaimed for wider sidewalks (similar to the works carried out at Queen Street in 2014).
- A shared cycling and walking path will be incorporated along Coleman Street and Armenian Street to form part of the proposed Central Area cycling network.