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Singapore To Stop Adding Cars to City From February 2018 (bloomberg.com) 97

An anonymous reader shares a report: Singapore, among the world's most expensive places to own a vehicle, will stop increasing the total number of cars on its roads next year. The government will cut the annual growth rate for cars and motorcycles to zero from 0.25 percent starting in February, the transport regulator said on Monday. "In view of land constraints and competing needs, there is limited scope for further expansion of the road network," the Land Transport Authority said in a statement on its website. Roads already account for 12 percent of the city-state's total land area, it said. Smaller than New York City, land in Singapore is a precious commodity and officials want to ensure the most productive use of the remaining space. Its infrastructure is among the world's most efficient and the government is investing $21 billion more on rail and bus transportation over the next five years, the regulator said.
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Singapore To Stop Adding Cars to City From February 2018

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  • overpopulation (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 23, 2017 @10:01AM (#55417503)

    And again everyone refuses to identify the root cause of the problem here, which is overpopulation.

    Overpopulation is the root cause of all our environmental problems, only one of which is lack of space.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Basic human instinct dictate reproduction over anything else. So it's no wonder people, including many intelligent ones, rationalize unlimited population growth. Often discussion of population control is downplayed or not even mentioned as a way of reducing environmental impact despite it being the most effective.

      Population growth at all costs is a nature induced group-think. Hopefully, humans will evolve to realize that unlimited growth isn't sustainable nor desirable. Though, some say not to worry, since

      • Turns out that policies to limit population growth are pretty unpopular, and if you even suggest them you are "Literally Hitler", which is why it will never happen unless you are Communist China.

        Well it is pretty hard for a democratic society to legislate for people to die, and harder to legislate for one-child policies.
        Same deal with banning the sending of food aid to needy people - after all - once poor people have been allowed to live, they'll only breed more of themselves and create more of the conditio

        • by Anonymous Coward

          harder to legislate for one-child policies.

          China's "one-child policy" was basically a tax break that punished you with poverty for having more than one child. Everyone above median and below 0.1% in the US is living under a zero-child policy.

          Day care, bidding your way into a decent school district away from people who are violent and stupid, fees for various "fixers" coaches and therapists if you have any disputes with that school district, ordinary medical and dental, and college savings will alter your life compared to zero-child just as much as

      • Basic human instinct dictate reproduction over anything else.

        That's what is going to have to change. One way or another.

      • Developed countries tend to have birth rates below replacement level (which causes its own problems). With increasing access to health care and education for women, the population will level off and start to decline,

    • Denial is a serious problem.

      My government in Australia is eagerly encouraging more people come here at massive, incredible detriment to the local job and housing market.
      It's madness.

  • Confused.. (Score:4, Funny)

    by sqorbit ( 3387991 ) on Monday October 23, 2017 @10:04AM (#55417513)
    I was confused a bit on how this was managed. I decided to pull up the Wikipedia article on Singapore. Here is the exact quote from Wikipedia "Singapore is a unitary multiparty parliamentary republic, with a Westminster system of unicameral parliamentary government." I'm sure there is someone out there with a higher intelligence that might be able to explain that. I need a aspirin for my headache after reading that twice.
    • by MancunianMaskMan ( 701642 ) on Monday October 23, 2017 @10:07AM (#55417533)
      or you could just edit the wikipedia article and delete all the difficult words
      • by houghi ( 78078 ) on Monday October 23, 2017 @10:38AM (#55417757)

        I did that once and the result was "Mostly harmless".

      • by Anonymous Coward

        or you could just edit the wikipedia article ...

        Good luck with that.

        Try editing Wikipedia and let us know how it works out for you.

        Odds are you'll be reverted in minutes, especially if your writing conflicts with the views of some basement-dwelling, Wikipedia-page-guarding troll that claims "ownership" of that page.

        • by fisted ( 2295862 )

          Doing that now and then on the German Wikipedia, where your changes don't even appear to the public until looked at and approved by some Wikipedia neckb^H^H^H^Hazi^H^H^Hinjas.

          It could be that your edits suck.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Massive taxation on cars is how it is managed:

      https://www.lta.gov.sg/content/ltaweb/en/roads-and-motoring/owning-a-vehicle/costs-of-owning-a-vehicle/tax-structure-for-cars.html

      I assume the next step will be to just ban car dealerships and imports, because the taxation hasn't stopped people buying cars, even if the taxes quadruple the price.

      A more progressive government would look how desperate people are to buy cars and just figure out how to invest that money into building UP. Like roads on top of roads.

      • Re:Confused.. (Score:5, Interesting)

        by _merlin ( 160982 ) on Monday October 23, 2017 @10:34AM (#55417729) Homepage Journal

        There are a limited number of private vehicle registrations available. When a registration becomes available (due to someone's registration lapsing, or the number of registrations being increased), they first look at needs-based assignment (e.g. if someone with a disabled family member has made and application), and if it isn't allocated that way they auction it.

        Most of the people buying vehicle registrations at auction for ridiculous prices really don't need a car, they just want it as a status symbol. Raising the price just makes it more exclusive. The city's really to small to handle any more private vehicles, it makes sense to stop increasing the number of vehicle registrations available.

        Building roads on top of roads isn't a solution - how do you get people on and off these stacked roads at their destinations? How does it do to the properties alongside the stacked roads? Singapore is already at a point where the vast majority of people don't need a car at all.

      • Re:Confused.. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by squiggleslash ( 241428 ) on Monday October 23, 2017 @10:44AM (#55417779) Homepage Journal

        Like roads on top of roads.

        Your solution is to block out the sun?

        The problem is supporting cars without destroying the cities. The experience in the US is that it's just not possible, you can do one or the other. Try to shoehorn cars into cities and replan them around cars, and you end up destroying the cities by removing walkability, and significantly reducing the attractiveness of city living. Your "Roads on top of roads" solution has been part implemented by various cities, but it has limits, not least what I just said - you'd be literally blocking out the sun at street level, creating a miserable place to live.

        The solution is to accept that cities aren't a car friendly place, and cars aren't city friendly, and to plan accordingly. Build parking lots on the edges of cities and create good, quality, transit for intracity transportation.

        I don't have a hate-on against cars because they're cars

        It's easier for car nuts to demonize people who like cities as having "hate ons" than address the very real practical issues related to creating "car friendly cities." The fact is, they just don't work. The solution isn't the American "Well ban cities then and force everyone to drive!" BS, it's to create a multitude of spaces and let people decide for themselves what tradeoffs they want. Want to live in a city? Give up the car. Want a car? Live in the suburbs.

        Whenever I suggest giving people choices might be an option, I inevitably get a "UR FORCING ME TO WALK!" rant, which in all honesty, is similar to your own. But the solution isn't to transcend rationality. Yeah, suburbs in SG are out of the question, so in this one instance, cars are just not going to cut it. Maybe the markets can come up with another way to create personal vehicles that'd be compatible with Singapore's unique situation. But for now, no, I don't think anyone's going to say that your right to drive outranks the right of everyone to see sunlight.

        • Re:Confused.. (Score:4, Interesting)

          by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) on Monday October 23, 2017 @12:31PM (#55418437)

          Whenever I suggest giving people choices might be an option, I inevitably get a "UR FORCING ME TO WALK!" rant, which in all honesty, is similar to your own.

          People in general don't understand systems that are outside their own personal experience. I frequently talk to American colleagues and they are all dumbfounded when I tell them that I only ever drive to work, and only because it's 40km. I have never driven my car into my own city, I rarely do the shopping with it even when its belting down rain, and short of driving to another country I also don't take it anywhere, and even I often take a train.

          Cities are designed in ways that suit certain modes of transport. My local supermarket is 600m away. The next one (much larger one) is 1.1km in the other direction. I typically go to the much larger one and have the choice of walking (1.3km ~13min) / cycling (1.3km ~5min) or driving (4km ~10min). To get in the city centre I could drive which takes about 35min, or I could cycle which takes about 20min.

          This doesn't make sense to most Americans as American cities are designed primarily with the car in mind. Public transport, bike ways, and general city planning to prevent people having to make long trips for basic needs comes a distant second to big roads, highways, and plenty of available parking in every direction.

        • Your solution is to block out the sun?

          Then we will drive in the shade!

          In all seriousness, I've visited Singapore several times -- a car would be a complete and total pain. As far as an edge of city park and ride, the "suburbs" are in a different country. Thus the most useful would be ones at the closest MRT lines to Malaysia (where people actually do need cars). To that end the next subway line (Thompson East Coast line - brown line on the map) will be built right to the checkpoint.

          The closest thing to suburban-ish areas of Singapore are one

        • by lokedhs ( 672255 )
          They have that in a few places in Singapore and it's not a very nice view: https://www.google.com.sg/maps... [google.com.sg]

          I think there is a reason why they're not doing more of it.

      • Massive taxation on cars is how it is managed:

        Errr no. Massive taxation disincentives it but it's not "how it's managed". They simply refuse registration beyond a certain number. That's how it is managed.

        I assume the next step will be to just ban car dealerships and imports, because the taxation hasn't stopped people buying cars, even if the taxes quadruple the price.

        No need. People will still need to replace existing cars, there isn't a ban on cars, just a ban on increase. The taxation will remain high or maybe even go higher to further incentivise people not to replace their old car and thus hand back the registration.

        A more progressive government would look how desperate people are to buy cars and just figure out how to invest that money into building UP.

        No. A progressive government realises that if your entire country is less than 25km wide there's

    • by Tablizer ( 95088 )

      quote from Wikipedia "Singapore is a unitary multiparty parliamentary republic, with a Westminster system of unicameral parliamentary government." I'm sure there is someone out there with a higher intelligence that might be able to explain that.

      In short, they are a totalitarian gov't, or what Americans often colloquially call "commies".

      Singapore more or less pioneered the concept of what some call "capitalistic communism", and China shortly followed. Basically the centralized government allows a degree of

    • I was confused a bit on how this was managed. I decided to pull up the Wikipedia article on Singapore. Here is the exact quote from Wikipedia "Singapore is a unitary multiparty parliamentary republic, with a Westminster system of unicameral parliamentary government." I'm sure there is someone out there with a higher intelligence that might be able to explain that. I need a aspirin for my headache after reading that twice.

      Translation: it's not described exactly the same as the US system, but I can't be arsed to spend thirty seconds on Google looking up a couple of unfamiliar words.

  • And only the rich will be able to afford a car in Singapore.

    • by judoguy ( 534886 )
      Pretty much the case already. They control car numbers by having a very expensive fee. They adjust it up or down to meter the number of cars in Singapore.
  • by Daneel Olivaw R. ( 5113539 ) on Monday October 23, 2017 @10:14AM (#55417591)
    Lived that for four years, exceptional public transport (dare I say best in the world)... also the taxi fares are dirty cheap.
  • So the punishment for vandalizing cars would by upped from six strokes of cane, [wikipedia.org] for guilty pleas, to 12. For non guilty pleas it will go up from 12 strokes to 24. It also provides for a process to show respect for foreign heads of state by reducing the number of strokes by 33%.
  • by mccalli ( 323026 ) on Monday October 23, 2017 @10:42AM (#55417771) Homepage
    People who have been there or who live there know this - the private car ownership thing is just not the same. It's a reasonably small city, and has excellent public transport or taxis. I've been several times, I've never been in a private car there.

    Don't compare this to the UK or US - it's a completely different situation, and it would seem to make sense to me.
    • To put this into perspective, 2 people could live in the middle and work at distant opposite sides of the country and still quite comfortably cycle to work within the hour. Or a more likely scenario: People can just walk to work. The country is tiny.

    • by judoguy ( 534886 )

      People who have been there or who live there know this - the private car ownership thing is just not the same. It's a reasonably small city, and has excellent public transport or taxis. I've been several times, I've never been in a private car there. .

      I have and my friends paid a small fortune for the privilege of having it.

  • Copy Paste (Score:5, Interesting)

    by XSportSeeker ( 4641865 ) on Monday October 23, 2017 @10:46AM (#55417793)

    You know, if you are going to copy paste the article anyways, better put the parts people will be asking questions about:
    "These changes are not expected to significantly affect the supply of permits since the quota is determined largely by the number of vehicle deregistrations, the regulator said. The limit on vehicle growth rate will be reviewed again in 2020."

  • Efficient and plentiful public transport, plenty of bicycle lanes, little to no private cars.

  • Singapore has tightly controlled car volumes for decades in no small part by its utterly oppressive tax scheme [dollarsandsense.sg]. Cars have long been just a luxury for the upper class, and the overall number of vehicles on the island had already been falling across all vehicle categories anyway [lta.gov.sg]. This completely theoretical reduction of a non-existent growth rate from 0.25% to zero is on a population of less than a million vehicles (so less than 2.5k/year), and they're going to reevaluate the "reduction" in less than 3 year

  • Singapore is the kind of place where 'adding cars' would be worded in a way that indicates that it is the responsibility of 'authorities' to increase the number of cars on the road.

    Social harmony is very, very important in Singapore. I am surprised there isn't an approved list of vehicle colors. Red and Black cars are permitted, but Red can only be used for official vehicles, and only several very expensive models can be 'added' that are finished in the color black. Teal and 'mustard' colored cars will b

  • Singapore - the best example of how sometimes you need an authority to decide in favor of group rights over individual rights. Too much freedom can be a curse.
    • by judoguy ( 534886 )

      Singapore - the best example of how sometimes you need an authority to decide in favor of group rights over individual rights. Too much freedom can be a curse.

      And this is how it starts. Fascism in 4, 3, 2....

You mean you didn't *know* she was off making lots of little phone companies?

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