Renewing the ageing infrastructure

The Yew Tee to Kranji stretch on the North South Line was described in The Straits Times, as the “most problematic section” of the North South Line (“Wanted: Experts to give rail network thorough health check”). In this blog post, Mr Lee Ling Wee, Managing Director of SMRT Trains, explains how SMRT is working to improve reliability not just along the 4.1 km of tracks between Yew Tee and Kranji, but throughout the North South-East West Line.

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Bus Captain Sng Eng Tiong – The “Sweet” Bus Captain

SMRT celebrates outstanding service excellence with the CEO Service Excellence awards. The awards recipients have all gone out of their way to show an exceptional level of service for commuters and colleagues alike. They serve as a example to all of us at SMRT that service excellence comes from within.

Bus Captain Sng Eng Tiong has been featured before in other news and blogs, like Bus Captain Sng is known to many as the sweet bus captain because of the basket of sweets and treats that he has next to his seat.  A simple sign explains it all, “Please help yourself to the candy and have a sweet journey ahead.”

Bus Captain Sng shares his motivations and inspiration behind this simple act of kindness.

The service excellence course (that all SMRT employees will go through) got me thinking of delivering service in a more creative way. I wanted to bring on smiles in everyone who journeys with us and tap on the empowerment that has been given to me. At that time, I also remembered watching a news report about a taxi driver who provided mints at the back of his taxi and a short greeting note to bring a smile to his passengers’ faces.

Station Stories: Pasir Ris MRT Station

Station Stories: We kick off this series of stories on our MRT stations with the terminus stations, the stations at the very end of the lines. 

EW 1: Pasir Ris Station

Opened in 1989, Pasir Ris MRT Station (EW1) is the eastern terminal station of the East West Line. It is also the first above ground MRT Station in Singapore to begin installing half height platform screen doors.

At the heart of Pasir Ris New Town and located right next to White Sands Shopping Centre, Pasir Ris MRT Station, is helmed by a seven man strong team throughout the day.

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Station Stories: Joo Koon MRT Station

Station Stories: We kick off this series of stories on our MRT stations with the terminus stations, the stations at the very end of the lines. 

EW 29: Joo Koon

At the western terminus of the East West line, lies Joo Koon MRT Station. Opened on 28 February 2009, Joo Koon MRT Station is unique as there are no residential areas surrounding it. Instead, there are numerous factories as well as army camps in its vicinity.

On weekdays, other than the usual peak hour traffic in the morning and evenings, Joo Koon MRT station is relatively quiet.


However it’s no walk in the park says Station Manager Sawal, who’s been in SMRT for the last 21 years.  “When we first started, there were no buildings around but now there are factories and once the extension (Tuas Link) comes up we expect to get busier”.  He further adds “Over the weekends the station can get crowded as at times bus loads of workers arrive”.

Station Manager Sawal is very familiar with the surroundings as he was part of the team that was working with LTA even before the station was operational.

Remembering Lee Kuan Yew

The week of National Mourning saw SMRT operate trains and selected bus services overnight twice in a week, with transport services operating on extended hours on other nights. This effort saw more than 400 of SMRT staff from buses and trains work through the night, thus allowing thousands of Singaporeans to pay their last respects to Mr Lee.

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Station Stories: Marina South Pier MRT Station

Station Stories: We kick off this series of stories on our MRT stations with the terminus stations, the stations at the very end of the lines. 

NS 28: Marina South Pier

Located on reclaimed land, the Marina South Pier MRT (NS 28) station is the newest station on the North South Line. Opened on 23 November 2014, Sunday, the station is the southernmost station on the North South line. The station is located near the Marina South Pier and the Marina Bay Cruise Centre Singapore and its 1.6 kilometers away from the next station, Marina Bay.

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Motivation and Capability

I read with great interest a letter in the Straits Times forum page on 13 March on “Motivating Transport Operators to Change”. I came away with respect for the writer, Lim Yi Fan. Although the letter was not addressed directly to SMRT, I have taken the liberty to add my voice to the conversation.

With some probity, the writer noted that: “the solution can be found only in the fundamentals.” I agree. The writer further suggested reviewing the existing contracting framework for the provision of public transport, and pegging it to a set of “performance indicators” to shape the behaviour and motivations of transport operators.

This may well be a necessary “step in the right direction”.

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SMRT Engineering Trains – Track Tamping Vehicle

Track Tamping Vehicle (TTV)

The SMRT Trains group employs an extensive range of specialised vehicles to maintain our rail network. Grouped under the Engineering Trains Branch (ETB), these vehicles roll out from our depots after passenger trains have completed service. Get to know the key workhorses of ETB, used by our engineers while the rest of Singapore is asleep in this series.

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