Judging from the healthy sales of folding and other bicycles during the pandemic, it is evident that more Singaporeans are taking to cycling for multiple reasons – from exercise to transport to recreation. This is a laudable trend and should be encouraged. After all, Singapore has been pushing a car-lite agenda since 2014 when the Sustainable Singapore Blueprint 2015 was launched. Bicycles help reduce reliance on cars, whether as a wholesale substitute or as a supplement for the last-mile commute. But it is evident too that there are many issues to be ironed out before Singapore becomes a bicycle-friendly country. While the cycling path network has been expanded in recent years, the mindset of road users has yet to catch up. This is why news that the Active Mobility Advisory Panel is reviewing regulations governing cyclists on the road is welcome.
There have been complaints from all sides – pedestrians, cyclists and motorists – about careless behaviour by other parties. Oblivious pedestrians, careless cyclists and errant motorists are problems that will exist regardless of how many rules are introduced and enforced. Licensing and regulations might help mitigate some issues, but it remains to be seen how any new rules will be framed and enforced.