Woodlands Temporary Bus Interchange (TBI) was officially launched today (12 Mar 2016), furnished with new features that enhance the travel experience for commuters and improve the work environment for staff. Woodlands TBI will serve residents in Woodlands for three years until 2019 as Woodlands Regional Interchange undergoes upgrading and construction of an underpass.
2. While the interchange is an interim arrangement, SMRT Buses has installed new and innovative features found at no other interchange (please refer here). The sprawling interchange has bus boarding and alighting berths that stretch nearly half a kilometer long, making it among the longest bus interchanges in Singapore. Aware that the size of the temporary interchange may pose a challenge to commuters with mobility needs as well as Bus Captains looking for unoccupied parking bays, the SMRT Buses team has put in great effort to ensure that the needs of commuters and staff are fully taken care of.
First-of-its-kind features at Woodlands TBI
SMRT Buses is the first bus operator to introduce a free buggy service for commuters who require assistance to get to the bus berths at the extreme ends of the interchange. Two four-seater electric buggies provide convenience and accessibility for commuters who may have difficulty walking to these berths. Pedestrian ramps which link the interchange to Woodlands MRT station were built to improve accessibility for commuters in wheelchairs. A Tactile Guidance System, which includes Braille guidance on handrails, helps the visually impaired to locate waiting areas.
In addition to existing display panels which inform commuters of bus arrival timings, SMRT Buses and NEC Asia Pacific, have introduced the latest version of the Interactive Panel to help commuters learn about travel options in the area to plan their journey.
In another first, a SMART bus guidance system displays information on large digital panels so that Bus Captains returning to the interchange can see which alighting berths and parking bays are available for their buses. Bus Captains and interchange staff also enjoy better amenities such as an air-conditioned staff lounge and a canteen with a variety of food stalls.
Mr. Tan Kian Heong, Vice President, SMRT Buses, said: “We have enhanced our efforts to ensure a smooth transition for our commuters from Woodlands Regional Interchange to the new temporary interchange. Although the relocation is temporary, we aim to provide our commuters and staff with the service standards found in a fully operational, permanent bus interchange. At the same time, Woodlands TBI allows us to work with the Woodlands community as we try out advanced technology like touch screen electronic journey planners and commuter-friendly features such as the free buggy service for a great travelling experience. We hope that commuters are able to enjoy these new service enhancements in addition to existing features as we strive to drive service to a higher level.”