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     FrontPage Edition: Mon 1 August 2005

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Evening ERP on northbound CTE from today




From today, 1 August 2005, the following changes will take place:

- ERP will be implemented for the northbound CTE from 6.00pm to 8.00pm on weekdays, except public holidays.

- A new ERP gantry will be in operation along the northbound CTE, between the PIE and Braddell Road.

This is a frequently asked question since LTA announced plans to extend Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) to the northbound Central Expressway (CTE) on weekday evenings from 1 August 2005.
To answer this and other questions, Journeys speaks to Dr Chin Kian Keong, LTA¨s Chief Engineer for Transportation.
Q: Why is there a need to introduce evening ERP on the northbound CTE?
A: Traffic condition on the northbound CTE in the evenings has been deteriorating since 2000. The proposal for introducing ERP was already mooted at that time, and again in 2002.
However, we decided to provide an additional traffic lane by using the shoulder lane on the stretch of the northbound CTE between the Pan Island Expressway (PIE) and Ang Mo Kio Avenue 1 instead.
Traffic condition improved but this did not last long. Six months later, congestion returned and has continued to persist especially during the evening peak hours. The average travel speed between 6.00pm to 8.00pm is below 40 km/h, with stop-start traffic. This has been frustrating for many motorists, and from an engineering perspective, is also sub-optimal because traffic flow is lower than what the expressway can actually carry.
The option of further widening this stretch of the CTE is not possible as the additional land that is needed is not available. As such, we need to introduce ERP during the most congested period, from 6.00pm to 8.00pm on weekdays, to regulate traffic and manage the congestion there so that traffic flow can be improved.
Q: Wouldn¨t evening ERP on the CTE contradict the Government's pro-family policies?
A: I think otherwise. If I¨m caught in stop-start traffic on my journey home to be part of a special family event, be it a birthday celebration or simply to watch a favourite TV programme with the children, I will be most frustrated and agitated. I will gladly welcome an ERP-priced road to allow me to reach home faster on these special days. On other days, there is the choice of not using the ERP-priced roads. There is also the alternative of taking public transport.
Q: What are the alternatives available for motorists using the CTE?
A: Motorists can switch to public transport, car pool, change their time of travel or take an alternative route. For example, instead of the CTE, they may want to use Thomson Road, Upper Thomson Road, Marymount Road, Serangoon Road and Upper Serangoon Road.

Source: Land & Transport Authority Newsletter JOURNEYS July 2005 Page 4

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Public Holidays NATIONAL DAY is the next public holiday. It falls on 9 August 2005