take a walk around town with...

Sunday, November 30, 2008

this was my original entry in response to the recent removal of seats by smrt:

I was surprised that SMRT decided to take out the seats from selected cars in service in a bid to increase the capacity of each train. I came back from a week's trip to Japan in September this year, where I was in Sapporo, Osaka and Tokyo, and one of the many things that I was intrigued by was how a commuter's experience was not compromised, by what I thought were three main factors:

1. Common courtesy and consideration for others.
People have an unspoken social grace in which they would give way without being asked - bt it giving way to others by standing on the left of the escalators in Sapporo and Tokyo, or for Osaka people stand to the right. Even in the trains, people will make way by moving into the middle of the cars instead of hogging the doors. People simply don't need to be reminded - hopefully the ugly Singaporean syndrome can be eradicated by improved social grace.

1. Physical layout of trains
Surprisingly, the train cars were generally narrower than our MRT system, yet there is always space to move into the train. Part of the reason would be the earlier point - though it seems that the overhead racks above the seats allow people to put their laptops, as well as other large items that would otherwise take up floor space - because nobody would like to leave their items on the ground for others to kick around accidentally. Of course, good sense not to put dripping wet items on the racks would be necessary! There are also many more handgrips in each car despite each car being shorter than one MRT car which allows for people to move in, and allow especially the shorter ones to have a safe ride. People automatically queue up to enter the train by standing on either side of the train doors at stations - it does make boarding and alighting fast. In Singapore, I'd prefer to call what I see as "bunching" instead of queueing.

2. Ladies' car during peak hours
I notice during my own train rides locally that there would always be an uncomfortably large space in between men and women for obvious reasons; however in Japan it seems that a dedicated car for ladies would prevent molestation, and allow people of the same gender to cut the extra space per ride that was otherwise wasted.

3. Efficiency of train operators
The fact that the trains already have a pre-published timing chart showing when they will pull into the station - so people are not left waiting with a rough estimate of 1 minute left before arrival; only to run for the train when the train pulls over earlier than expected, as what seems to happen sometimes locally.This way, commuters do not need to have a mad rush trying to get to the trains.

I believe the local MRT system borrows heavily from the Japanese rail system, why not SMRT adapt the observations to our local culture and let's make the best of it?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

search for this line online:

"I am also a wedding blogger and I own Singapore’s most popular wedding blog. The blog provides wedding and marriage advice to couples all over the world, including US and Singapore."

that came out in a publication dated august 2008. and it's related to this and this.

why the sudden mention?

it's to do with this.