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Bukit Panjang bus interchange to relocate? September 6, 2009

Posted by hafizbam in SMRT, Something New, Transport Events.
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Map showing the current location of Bukit Panjang bus interchange and the upcoming Downtown Line MRT station. The grass patch in between them is indicated by the red star. Map sourced from streetdirectory.com.

Map showing the current location of Bukit Panjang bus interchange and the upcoming Downtown Line MRT station. The grass patch in between them is indicated by the red star. Map sourced from streetdirectory.com.

The fight for a more integrated public transport complex for Bukit Panjang town continues, with no less than three Members of Parliament (MPs) putting to the table their own ideas on how the upcoming Bukit Panjang Downtown MRT Line station slated to open in 2015, can be better connected to the current Bukit Panjang LRT station and bus interchange.

Cheers from the residents of Bukit Panjang who will finally get a direct train service to town and the east followed swiftly with complaints that the train station would be quite a distance away from the current LRT and bus stations. The Land Transport Authority (LTA) explained that it was not technically possible for the line to swing sharply from Upper Bukit Timah Road to meet the LRT station, and then return to Woodlands Road to the upcoming depot in Gali Batu.

Bukit Panjang MP Teo Ho Pin as well as Holland-Bukit Timah GRC MPs Vivian Balakrishnan and Liang Eng Hwa have approached the LTA twice to discuss the possibility of relocating the bus interchange in between the LRT station and upcoming MRT station which should not be an uphill task considering the land is now an empty field (indicated in map above with the red star). If approved, it will cut down the walking distance between the two train stations from 120 metres to just 70 metres.

What I think should be done though is to create yet another integrated public transport hub for this town, by shifting the MRT station’s location slightly south closer to Petir Road (where the LRT station is) such that it can be connected easily to the new bus interchange which can be part of a new mixed development, say another shopping mall with a cinema! (Yes, residents of Bukit Panjang has had to be contented with a cinema-less Bukit Panjang Plaza for years.) Not only will it help save LTA some money, it will also help to improve the commuting experience for this town which had in the past, been considered for the terminal stop for the current North-South MRT Line instead of Choa Chu Kang which was relatively less developed then.

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