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Managing vehicle ownership and usage

31 May 2013

Below is a Facebook post by Minister Lui Tuck Yew on his visit to the Marina Coastal Expressway (MCE) on 16 May 2013.

This morning I was at the MCE to check out its progress. All structural works for the MCE are completed and it is on track to open by the end of the year. While the Government will continue to develop the road network where possible, this will largely be to facilitate the movement of buses and provide access to new developments. We will need to continue relying on vehicle ownership and usage restraint measures to manage traffic congestion.

Many of you have shared with me your suggestions to improve the COE system. I have asked LTA to consult the industry and the public on two ideas in particular. The first, is make sure that Cat A, which is intended for buyers of smaller, budget cars, retains its original purpose. To do this, we could consider entirely new criteria, or look at layering, on top of the existing engine capacity criterion, an additional requirement that Cat A cars should, say, not exceed a certain engine power. The second is to, possibly, levy a surcharge on any individual who owns more than one car, given our limited COE supply.

We will continue to harness new technology to manage traffic congestion. ERP has helped to make more efficient use of our existing roads, by spreading out traffic more evenly over peak and non-peak periods, and across priced and un-priced roads. Since 2011, LTA has been testing the next generation ERP system based on global navigation satellite technology. When implemented, it will allow motorists to pay only for how much they actually contribute to congestion, unlike today, where all motorists passing under a gantry pay the same rate, regardless of their distance travelled on the congested road. Motorists may also be able to pay for roadside parking, or Off Peak Car (OPC) day licences using the new On-Board Unit (OBU), which will replace the existing In-Vehicle Unit (IU). It will be several years before we can implement ERP2.