Saturday, June 26, 2010

Local Transport

A good form of local transport is car sharing and bicycle sharing. It should be operated on a licence given by the town council and should operate for short distance within a town. The purpose is to bring people from their home to the town center, MRT station or bus interchange and to bring them back. By using shared bicycles and electric cars, the vehicle are used for several trips each day and reduce the space required for parking.

There is a maintenance cost, due to the high usage of the vehicles, but the cost to the consumer should be much lower than the cost of a privately owned bicycle or electric car. There is less hassle in looking for a parking space.

This type of sharing arrangements need to be initiated by the authority, as they have the power to set aside space for parking, right of way on the roads and overcome other obstacles. Several cities in Europe have taken the step to make these operations available.

In many residential areas in Singapore, the car parking lots and side roads are congested with parked cars. It is quite a hassle to drive through these roads or to find a parking space. The situation has become quite bad. The situation can be remedied by introducing the sharing schemes.

To make it work, we need the authoruty to the town councils to initiate this scheme and to overcome the regulatory overlap between the various ministries and agencies.

Tan Kin Lian


Anonymous said...

In Singapore if one cycles on the side of the road, there may be some safety concerns. I once witnessed a cyclist being physically "brushed" by a speeding bus. Luckily he tilted towards the kerb.

Anonymous said...

dear mr tan i realli admire and appreciate and can see the underlying community spirits underneath this article, however our society is not built on communities togetherness and considerations on such issues, is more individualistic..i tend to see it this year...

Anonymous said...

Bicycle renting model in HangZhou, China, is fully self-serve and is enjoying great success. Here is how it works:
Every bus stop and major place of interest has a self-serve depot which has about 10 bicycles locked lots for rental and has another about 10 spare unlock lots for bicycle return use.
User simply buy a cash-card to unlock/rent the bicycle. It is charged by the hour at, I think, S$0.20 an hour. You can then return the bicycle at any depot that has empty/unlock parking lot.
It is a real boon for the tourists and locals which use it to commute between bus stop and shopping or place of interests or meeting someone anywhere.
It is really very effective and green.

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