A Singapore press holdings portal

Transport, Singapore

Priscilla Goy and Lester Hio
Monday, Aug 18, 2014

Transport, Singapore

TEL will cut travel time for residents in east

The Straits Times | Priscilla Goy and Lester Hio | Monday, Aug 18, 2014

Commuters living in the east can expect significantly shorter travelling times to the city and north when the new Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL) opens in 2024.

A trip from East Coast Park to Orchard should take just 45 minutes, down from the current 75 minutes by bus.

Those commuting from Marine Parade to the central business district (CBD) by bus and train will halve their travel time to 20 minutes.

Ms Hazwani Lee, 29, an accounts executive, who lives in Upper East Coast, said that she will be glad not to have to squeeze with other commuters on the way to work in Raffles Place.

"There's only the East-West line to Raffles Place from the east, and it's always crowded in the morning," she said.

Mountbatten MP Lim Biow Chuan said that the new line is an exciting development for residents in his constituency, including those who own cars.

"There are hardly any buses in these areas and residents have told me that they'd be willing to switch to public transport if MRT stations are built nearby," he said.

Three stations of the TEL - the Tanjong Rhu, Katong Park and Amber stations - are in his constituency. "Even if they have cars, we should promote the use of public transport," he added.

Rail connectivity has been a bugbear of commuters in the area.

Currently, residents have to take a bus to their destination or find their way to an East-West Line station.

"It takes me about 20 minutes to take a bus to Tanah Merah MRT station but in the future I just need five minutes to walk to Bayshore station," said recent university graduate Adam He, 24. He lives across from the new Bayshore station and is starting work near one-north in Buona Vista.

Even some property owners affected by land acquisition welcomed the new line.

St Patrick's School principal Adolphus Tan said the new line would benefit staff and students.

The new Marine Terrace station will be sited in a corner of the school.

But his school will have to give up some of its land - about 411 sq m or the size of two tennis courts - for the new MRT line. Mr Patrick Mowe, a member of the management committee at Laguna Park condominium in Marine Parade, also welcomed the development despite having to give up 744 sq m of land.

The condominium's main entrance will have to be relocated but no homes will be affected.

"With the convenience of having a station right at our doorstep, I think there'd be hardly any hesitation in giving up that small plot of land," he said.

Getting there quicker with TEL

FROM EAST COAST PARK TO ORCHARD

Now: 75 minutes by bus Future: 45 minutes using TEL

FROM MARINE PARADE TO SHENTON WAY

Now: 40 minutes by bus and MRT Future: 20 minutes by TEL

FROM MARINE PARADE TO WOODLANDS

Now: 80 minutes by bus Future: 60 minutes by TEL

MARINE PARADE TO JURONG EAST

Now: 65 minutes by bus Future: 50 minutes by TEL and East-West Line

FROM UPPER EAST COAST ROAD TO ANG MO KIO

Now: 60 minutes by bus and MRT Future: 45 minutes by TEL and North-South Line


This article was first published on August 16, 2014.
Get a copy of The Straits Times or go to straitstimes.com for more stories.

No comments yet.
Be the first to post comment.