Car-Free Sunday expands to Telok Ayer

Adrian Lim, MyPaper AsiaOne 26 Oct 16;

After a brief hiatus, the Car-Free Sunday SG initiative will be back this weekend for another six months, with more roads to be closed for use by cyclists, joggers and pedestrians.

The monthly programme, which was piloted from February to July this year, will be expanded from the Central Business District (CBD) and Civic District areas into the Telok Ayer conservation area.

The second instalment of Car-Free Sunday will be stretched to 5.5km from 4.7km previously, with additional road closures in the Telok Ayer area. The affected roads are McCallum Street, Amoy Street, Boon Tat Street, Telok Ayer Street and Stanley Street.

Announcing the news yesterday in a blog post, National Development Minister Lawrence Wong said the pilot had drawn "tens of thousands" of Singaporeans, and a lot of positive feedback.

He said many people had asked for the initiative to continue, and for the car-free route to be expanded.

"Car-Free Sunday SG is a step towards our broader vision of a car-lite and people-friendly society," said Mr Wong.

Under Car-Free Sunday, some roads are fully closed, and others partially, to provide spaces for the public to walk, jog, cycle and take part in recreational activities, such as mass workouts.

It is typically held on the last Sunday of every month.

Besides the expansion to Telok Ayer, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) said more roads will be fully closed, such as the five-lane Robinson Road and four-lane Cecil Street, to create more cycling and jogging lanes.

Buses plying these roads will be diverted to Shenton Way. Roads will be closed between 8am and 11am.

For the upcoming Car-Free Sunday on Oct 30, the public can enjoy free guided tours of the Thian Hock Keng Temple at Telok Ayer Street.

There will also be an educational trail along Ann Siang Hill and Telok Ayer Green.

Cafes along Telok Ayer Street will open from 8am, in conjunction with the initiative.

Cindy Leong, managing director of juice shop The Cold Pressed Station, said: "Our target customers are usually CBD workers but now we can also reach out to families who are coming to the area."

The second instalment of Car-Free Sunday will run until April next year on the following dates: Oct 30, Nov 27, Jan 22, Feb 26, March 26 and April 30.

The URA did not say if it will be extended after April but noted the initiative "will run for at least six editions".

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