This is a strange blog to start, since I am presently not living in Singapore and have little experience cycling in Singapore. But I anticipate that I will be a frequent cyclist when I return to Singapore, and I am concerned about the inferior status of cyclists in Singapore.
Living in Chicago has made me a cycling addict. I biked around my neighbourhood occasionally in Sg, and once did Changi Coastal Road with a couple of friends, but that was all. I disliked Changi Coastal Road because we kept getting truck exhaust in our faces, and there was no scenery to speak of.
Chicago is biking heaven in comparison. Miles of bike trails, including the lakefront bike trail, which takes me straight from where I live to downtown Chicago. Effective bike advocacy groups, who’ve persuaded the city to put bike lanes along various roads. It is no Amsterdam, but it is slowly getting there. Sg is a long long way behind.
I started this blog on a whim after Googling for “critical mass singapore” turned up nothing on biking. One of the best aspects of cycling in Chicago is the Critical Mass movement. In the summer months up to 2000 cyclists show up for Critical Mass. I did not expect to find Masses being regularly held in Sg, since the police will almost certainly crush the cyclists, but I thought I’d come across suggestions from the Singapore biking community for a critical mass of sorts. But all Google turned up was a slew of press releases from government bureaucrats talking about acquiring a critical mass of talent for some industry or other that has momentarily grabbed their interest.
I haven’t Googled yet for bike advocacy groups in Singapore. I certainly hope they exist. And I don’t mean cycling clubs focusing on competitive cycling. I mean groups advocating cycling as a way of life. Groups advocating cycling to work. Cycling to the market. Bikes as a valid form of traffic, not as mere recreation.
It will take a lot of work for something like Critical Mass to ever gain a foothold in that rule-bound country, but if I’m going to live there, I might as well do something about it.