Six out of ten people who voted in Yahoo! Singapore’s recent poll believe there should be a bicycle lane set aside on the roads of Singapore.
The three-day poll, which was put up on Tuesday earlier this week, garnered over 9730 votes.
It asked users “Should Singapore have bicycle lanes on roads?".
5740 voted Yes, while 3990 voted No.
Jolvin Yip, 26, who cycles to work daily, backs the call for a separate bicycle lane which he believes will help protect the lives of road cyclists like himself.
He told Yahoo! Singapore, “As you can see, more people are cycling in Singapore and there is definitely a need to protect the road cyclists. So I believe it’s about time for the government to set aside a cycling lane especially with the recent deaths involving cyclists.”
Sharon Lim, 28, who goes for night cycling every weekend, believes the republic can learn from other countries and strive to become a more cycling-friendly city.
“I think much can be learnt from other countries like Australia, England, France, Netherlands, just to name a few. Since the government has been encouraging cycling, they should start putting it into action and there is no better way than setting aside a cycling lane,” she said.
However while cyclists are hugely in favour of a bicycle lane, drivers Yahoo! Singapore spoke to expressed reservation.
Joseph See, 50, believes roads in Singapore are congested enough as it is and that cyclists should pay road tax if a bicycle lane is indeed set aside.
“Our road is contested enough. If that’s the case, motorcyclists can also demand a lane for themselves. With bus lanes, we have cut down a lane at certain time and the road is already jammed even outside peak hours. Since all road users pay road tax for the use, then maybe the cyclists should also pay for the use of the road,” he said.
Lim Jia Bao, 32, questions the need for a bicycle lane based on the number of cyclist deaths.
He said, “Should we have cycling lanes just because cyclists die on the roads every year? Based on this logic, we should also have a motorcycle lane because there are more motorcyclists who die on our roads every year – and these motorcyclist pay road tax. Are cyclists willing to pay road tax?”
On Thursday, The Straits Times reported that many motorists also blame cyclists for reckless cycling and flouting of traffic rules, which endangers the lives of both parties.
Calls to improve road safety for cyclists was again brought into sharp focus after the death of 48-year-old Freddy Khoo, who was killed after a lorry hit him and two other cyclists at Loyang Avenue early last Saturday morning.
And in the latest of cycling accident, a 72-year-old cyclist was injured when he was knocked down by a car on Thursday morning.
Following Khoo’s death, his friend and fellow cyclist Stephen Choy wrote an impassioned open letter to Transport Minister Lui Tuck Yew, again calling for the government to set aside a 1.5-metre bicycle lane on Singapore roads.
The letter, which has since been shared over 2000 times on Facebook, sparked a debate on whether there is a need for a dedicated bicycle lane in Singapore.
MP Irene Ng, a long-time advocate of safe cycling and a prominent voice in Parliament on making Singapore a more cycling-friendly city, had expressed her disappointment over Khoo’s death.
She wrote on Facebook, "In earlier years, I sometimes felt like a lone voice in the wilderness, often criticised by those who didn't believe that cyclists have a place on our roads.”
Parliamentary Secretary (Transport) Dr Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim also said on his Facebook page on Tuesday that the government will meet with various stakeholders to get their views on road safety.
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