Skip to main content

Advertisement

Advertisement

Ride here, ride now: Cycling is more than just a hobby these days

SINGAPORE — If you do not own a bicycle, you should consider getting your own ride now. After all, Singapore is getting closer to becoming a bicycle-friendly city, with many government initiatives pushing for a car-lite society.

Car Free Sunday in Singapore's Civic District has proven to be a hit with cyclists and Singaporeans. (Photo: Don Wong)

Car Free Sunday in Singapore's Civic District has proven to be a hit with cyclists and Singaporeans. (Photo: Don Wong)

SINGAPORE — If you do not own a bicycle, you should consider getting your own ride now. After all, Singapore is getting closer to becoming a bicycle-friendly city, with many government initiatives pushing for a car-lite society.

Last week, the Government announced that Tengah is going to be developed into the country’s first car-free town centre, while earlier this month, Kampung Admiralty took the spotlight when it was highlighted that it would be the site for Singapore’s first automated bicycle-parking system. These come hot on the heels of other public initiatives such as Car-Free Sunday in the Civic District and a bike-sharing pilot that will kickoff in Jurong Lake District next year.

Malls and condominiums have gotten the memo, too: Funan Digital Mall will have its own indoor cycling path after renovations are completed in three years. And new condo Riverbank at Fernvale will launch a bicycle-sharing facility for residents next year.

No doubt the cycling movement here is growing in leaps and bounds. Bicycle shops, cycling interest groups and cycling events have also sprung up over the years. And most of the bicycle shops that TODAY spoke to claim there is greater interest in cycling now, be it in terms of buying a bicycle or just making enquiries.

Co-owner of Tokyobike Singapore Jolyn Chua, 34, told TODAY that sales have seen “about a 25 per cent increase each year since they started in 2011”, while managing director of Hello, Bicycle! Maksimenko Irina, 33, revealed that “there has been an increase in sales as well as demand … (leading to) an increase of roughly 20 per cent in sales figures in recent years”.

Brand and marketing manager of Coast Cycles Tony Tan, 50, shared that Coast Cycles has received “more enquiries over the years”, and customers are always checking in for “fresh and unique” bicycles. “It means that they are interested. Overall, there’s more awareness about cycling now. We see a lot of youngsters (in their early 20s), and those in their mid-30s or even early 40s, who come by to check our new launches. They are all cycling for leisure.”

Tan said Coast Cycles also has a set of demo bicycles, and it encourages customers to “test it out” before purchasing.

Cycling groups have seen a surge in members. Co-founder of LovecyclingSG Francis Chu, 56, said he started the group back in 2010 with only seven members, “but the number has been growing exponentially over the past six years. Today, our Facebook group has 14,631 members”. The group meets every Sunday morning to take on different trails, and conducts a round-the-island session with a smaller group on Friday nights.

Like many others, Chu was prompted to pick up cycling in 2004 as a form of exercise, after encountering health scares. “I started to experience frequent dizziness after squatting for just a few minutes or when I walked up the stairs quickly ... (thus) I began to look for a form of moderate exercise that I could perform regularly. I’ve benefitted from regular cycling ... it’s better with the increasing (number of) park connectors, and improved intra-town connections such as the new cycling paths in Ang Mo Kio town, and other seamless connections, and I’m very happy and encouraged to see that the cycling communities are growing in popularity.”

Fellow cycling enthusiast and founder of JoyRiders, Joyce Leong, 60, started her club in 2006 and has seen numbers growing through the decades. Today, her group has 1,900 members. She quipped: “Cycling is a fantastic way to see the world, and at the same time to keep fit and (make) friends from different walks of life! We just need to educate people to share the road and ride safely, too.”

Read more of the latest in

Advertisement

Popular

Advertisement

Stay in the know. Anytime. Anywhere.

Subscribe to get daily news updates, insights and must reads delivered straight to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, I agree for my personal data to be used to send me TODAY newsletters, promotional offers and for research and analysis.