Make your way to Bencoolen Street now and you’ll be greeted by lumbering heavy machinery within a maze of traffic cones and hoarding. It’s chaos.
Thankfully, once construction of Bencoolen MRT station is completed, by the first quarter of 2017, the area will flourish into a green thoroughfare perfect for pedestrians and cyclists. It’s all part of the Land Transport Authority’s (LTA) efforts to ‘create a more conducive and pleasant environment for people to walk, cycle and ride public transport’.
The redesigned street will accommodate plenty of car-lite considerations. Wide footpaths will be lined with greenery and benches, the latter designed by students and alumni from the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, while sheltered linkways will connect Bencoolen MRT station to hotspots in the vicinity. A cycling lane will bridge Bencoolen Street to Rochor Canal and, once the North-South Corridor is completed, even to the CBD. Cyclists will also benefit from about 125 lots scattered across the road to park their two-wheelers.
And finally, to quicken and smoothen public transportation in the neighbourhood, the LTA is also carving out a dedicated bus lane along the street. It all sounds pretty damn good, if you ask us.
The revamped Bencoolen Street will be completed by the first quarter of 2017.