Monday, January 28, 2008

Missing MRT link

Source: The Straits Times

Singapore will one day have the most extensive rail and subway network for any country in the world. The forward-thinking Singapore government has announced plans to spend S$40 billion to double the MRT network by 2020.

According to The Straits Times on Jan 25, Singapore will have 278km of rail link, from 138km today. Its network density will rise from 31km per million residents today to 51km per million - surpassing that of major cities like Hong Kong and Tokyo, and comparable to current densities in cities like New York and London.

Will the Singapore MRT blueprint be completed by then? Unlikely. There's always room for Singapore to create an even more extensive network as the population grows.

A missing link could be a MRT rail track from Singapore to the southern Malaysian city of Johor Baru. It's not a radical idea. In fact, businessmen on both sides of the causeway are toying with the idea.

Such a link will definitely be useful to help ease the massive traffic at the causeway, the land-based bridge that links Singapore and Malaysia.

ST had estimated about 250,000 people enter Malaysia via the causeway every day. This works out to more than 90 million people each year. This is a staggering number as it is nearly 20 times the population of Singapore. The number of people using the causeway is almost one-fifth the 414 million riders who used Singapore's MRT in 2007.

Of course, there is no certainty that Malaysia and Singapore will agree to the proposed JB-Singapore MRT link. There are simply too many complications at the government-to-government level although it is a desirable project. The two governments can't even agree to build a new overhead bridge to replace the aging causeway and resolve a host of other bilateral problems.

And can they agree to a common ticketing system even if they manage to build a MRT link between Singapore and JB? Don't bet on it!


galadriel said...

We can learn and benefit so much from each other if we throw away ego and all that political posturing.

But we'll never realise how much we need our neighbours until times of strife, I guess.

Both Malaysia and Singapore are kiasu on many fronts.

Anonymous said...

Singapore is filthy rich. This was proven by its investments all over the world, even western banks need help from Singapore.

The problem is, Singapore is lacking of 'land'. Even though Singapore can buy land in other countries, like in Johore, Malaysia, the 'feel of ownership' is still not there simply because Johore is not part of Singapore. I think that is the reason why MM Lee spoke about both Malaysia and Singapore become 'one entity' again in future.

To me, there is such possibility as the world is becoming 'borderless' day by day and people's thinking are geared toward economic rather than patriotic value.

Only then, there will be no "Missing MRT link".

Anonymous said...

The second post states that Singapore is so rich as to be able to help Western and European Banks.

They are supposedlly 'investments'; how our neighbouring countries read the 'investments' do matters to their relationships with Singapore.

Should our neighbours think that the Investments could be better used to invest in them(neighbour staes) both for commercial and friendship purposes. They maybe impressed with the feelings of a 'unfriendly neighbour' namely Singapore.

Anonymous said...

2nd annoy, you got the 1st annoy worng. I guess the 1st annoy actually he / she prefers Malaysia to be part of Singapore, or at least Johore is part of Singapore, instead of the other way round.

I wish in time to come, this will happen. Malaysians are sick of Malaysia.

zamanski said...

Ha ha very funny Annoy#3 the quick one on Malaysia become part of Singapore. Malaysia is too big ,geographically speaking and almost in every other way, to be part of Singapore-- please use your common sense dude!. BTW its just your silly perception that Malaysians are sick of Malaysia. It does'nt mean that if 100 or 200 or even 10,000 or 20,000 malaysians are not happy with their govt policies then the whole nation is not happy. Infact I think Malaysians are a rather happy and contented lot and they don't care 2 cents on what singapore or others think !

Anyway its more likely singapore becomes part of malaysia in the medium term furture (my feeling it would be somewhere after 2020) as in Hong-Kong become part of China -- 1 Country - 2 Systems concept. This is the only way Singapore can survive in this increasingly globalised and borderless world.

Anonymous said...

Zamanski, your thinking is too shallow and not far sighted. Are you a Singaporean?

DW said...

$ is not everything in life, just look at how Malaysia dealt with the SG-MY Rail issue.

Besides, wat's the great deal with the "bloodstained" dime from the peasants and their carts?

mrtsardine said...

i dont know how you can say that Singapore will one day have the most extensive rail and subway network for any country in the world when both Japan and Korea have such complex subway networks!

Sophie said...


i'm comparing countries, not cities. of cos, singapore is a little red dot, either as a city or a country.

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