New MRT lines aren’t the only thing that will reduce our commuting time and bring us “closer” to work. If you haven’t already noticed, wide, cyclist-friendly paths are popping up in neighbourhoods all over Singapore. These paths are all part of the National Cycling Plan to link the entire Singapore with cyclist-friendly paths and park connectors, so people will cycle not just for recreation, but also cycle to work. The first housing estate to be fully-fitted with bike paths is Ang Mo Kio, with the full network ready by 2019.
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The Appeal of “Cycle to Work”
By 2020, 190 kilometres of bike paths (some shared between pedestrians and cyclists) will be built in housing estates, complementing the already impressive 300km of park connectors. By 2030, the combined length of cycling paths will reach 700km. (That’s the distance between Singapore to Penang!)
With our expanding cycling network and increasing exposure to cycling as a commute via shared bikes, more people are trading their car or Ez-Link card for two wheels (be it a bicycle, e-scooter or e-bicycle). Whether you would want to make the switch is entirely up to you, but if ever you do, know that these are the best places in Singapore to live and cycle to work.
Between 2013 and 2018, a staggering 10,230 new HDB units have been announced to be built in Yishun new town (Punggol has 15,517 in the same period). Most of these new flats are in the yet undeveloped southeastern area of Yishun. Luckily, residents will have convenient access to existing amenities, such as the new Northpoint City, Ng Teng Fong General Hospital and the legendary Chong Pang hawker centre via bike paths. Under the National Cycling Plan, Yishun’s cycling paths will also link to the following workplaces, thanks in part to the :
- Seletar Aerospace Park (approx 5km by bicycle*)
- Ang Mo Kio Industrial Estate (approx 6.5km)
- Senoko Industrial Estate/Woodlands Industrial Park (approx 9.5km via the Round Island Route)
- Sin Ming Industrial Estate (approx 10km)
*5km roughly equals 25-30 minutes commute on a bicycle.
Just last year, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) unveiled plans to expand the cycling network in Tampines from 6.9 km to 21 km by 2022 while widening footpaths and redesigning roads to cater to cyclists. As part of a cycling trunk route, the spectacular bike path to be built over the Tampines Expressway will surely elicit the envious looks of motorists stuck in a peak hour jam. When the network is complete, those who live in Tampines, in particular residents of the new BTO flats in Tampines North, can easily get to these workplaces on their bikes:
- Changi Business Park (approx 4.3km)
- Loyang Industrial Estate (approx 4.6km)
- Changi Logistics Centre (approx 4.7km)
- Kaki Bukit Industrial Estate (approx 7.2km)
Construction of the Bedok Cycling Network started back in 2015, and the new 13km network finally opened earlier this year. This network includes specially demarcated bicycle crossings for cyclists, and additional bicycle parking boxes were also built at popular areas. Once the upcoming Outdoor Play Corridor is completed, the Bedok Cycling Network will also link to it, allowing residents to get to East Coast Park, Bedok Reservoir and other recreational areas easily. Those who work in the vicinity can also cycle to work, for example:
- Paya Lebar Central (approx 4.1km)
- Eunos Techpark (approx 4.1km)
- Eunos Industrial Estate (approx 4.3km)
- Tai Seng Industrial Estate (approx 5.8km)
#4: Jurong East
Jurong isn’t all about the High-Speed Rail (or lack thereof). In July last year, the biggest town in the west of Singapore just unveiled a new 15 km cycling network connecting Jurong East, Chinese Garden and Lakeside. There are also plans for the Taman Jurong neighbourhood to have its own cycling network, and by 2020, these two networks will be integrated for greater convenience and accessibility. When that happens, Jurong East will be an ideal place to live and cycle to work to these locations:
- International Business Park (approx 1.6km)
- Clementi West LogisPark (approx 3.7km)
- Pandan Loop Industrial Estate (approx 4.2km)
- one-north (approx 7.6km)
#5: Toa Payoh
The North South MRT Line might be getting unbearably crowded during peak hours, but residents won’t have to put up with it much longer. The LTA has recently awarded two contracts for the construction of the North-South Corridor (NSC) tunnels, which will start from Toa Payoh Rise. These NSC tunnels come with cycling trunk routes that link up with the routes in the National Cycling Plan and dedicated cycling path networks within Toa Payoh. Besides easy access to MacRitchie Reservoir Park and a smooth path to the Marina Reservoir recreation area, residents are able to cycle to work to:
- Geylang Bahru Industrial Estate (approx 3km)
- Tai Seng Industrial Estate (approx 6.3km)
- Paya Lebar Central (approx 6.5km)
- Raffles Place (approx 7.8km)
Is “ease of cycling to work” in your home search criteria?
If you’re interested in cycling to work in Singapore and are looking for a new home, pay attention to the neighbourhoods you’re interested in to see if they can provide seamless access to your workplace on two wheels (e.g low number of stops at traffic junctions). Once you zoom in on an unit or two, explore the area on bike and do a test-run from home to work. Who knows, a pleasant journey might just seal the deal!
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If you found this article helpful, 99.co recommends Quick Guide to BTO, SBF and Resale HDB Grants for Couples and Why living in a cycling neighbourhood is the way to go
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