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Ideas wanted for better Kallang Park Connector

SINGAPORE — The Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) is calling for suggestions to improve the Kallang Park Connector, which links Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park and Kallang Riverside Park, so it can better serve as a commuter cycling route.

Ideas wanted for better Kallang Park Connector

Locations of crossings along the Kallang Park Connector. Photo: Urban Redevelopment Authority

SINGAPORE — The Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) is calling for suggestions to improve the Kallang Park Connector, which links Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park and Kallang Riverside Park, so it can better serve as a commuter cycling route.

The route, completed in 1992, has several crossings, such as overhead bridges, that require cyclists to dismount and push or carry their bicycles. For example, to cross the Pan Island Expressway (PIE), cyclists must dismount and push their bicycles 250m on a narrow footpath alongside the PIE, cross a high pedestrian overhead bridge and cycle 300m along narrow pavements in a landed housing estate before they re-join the Kallang Park Connector.

The URA today (June 30) called for an expression of interest, inviting consultants to undertake a planning study to propose design and technical solutions to improve the experience. “Due to its alignment, this park connector has the potential to serve as a key commuter cycling route from central Singapore to the south,” said the URA. It has named seven locations along the 10km-long park connector where pedestrians and cyclists’ journeys are affected or interrupted by major roads.

Possible solutions include cycling-friendly ramps and bridges over roads and water bodies in constrained sites, although these structures will still have to meet vehicular height clearances. The construction process also cannot compromise drainage or vehicular capacity. For the proposed underpasses, studies must be conducted to ensure the stability of the existing Kallang River drain wall, vehicular bridge footings or underground services is not compromised.

Interested teams can submit their proposals by Aug 24. The team selected to do the planning study will be announced in the second quarter of next year. The study is expected to take a year to complete.

Dr Lee Der-Horng, a professor at the National University of Singapore’s (NUS)  Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, hopes any improvements would result in an obstacle-free park connector, enabling people to cycle along the major attractions without having to stop. “If they want to make it for commuter purposes, URA (should also) pay some attention to the last mile issue, which means that cyclists (need to be able to) have continuous access to their destinations when they reach the end of the (park connector),” he said.

Associate Professor Chin Hoong Chor, also from the same department at NUS, said the park connector should be “holistically looked at from the users point of view, from the beginning to the end”.

It should reduce walking and have good connections to workplaces, have ample parking for bicycles, and there could be spaces for cyclists to freshen up  as near to workplaces as possible. “The (URA) also needs to take into account not only the cyclists’ concerns but the pedestrians’ concerns as well – when they need to walk to their workplaces after parking their bicycles,” he added.

Ms Li Shi Yu, 23, who has been cycling to work for three months, suggested more pavilions or shelters along park connectors in case of sudden downpours. “I've been caught in the rain a couple of times and the nearest shelter was really far away,” she said.

More information on the tender is available at http://ura.sg/bishantocity. ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY Marissa Yeo



 

 

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