Yishun commuters angry over delays as buses stuck in long queues outside new interchange

Photo of traffic congestion outside Yishun bus interchange.  Photo: Legit Singapore/Facebook
Photo of traffic congestion outside Yishun bus interchange. Photo: Legit Singapore/Facebook

Yishun residents looking forward to the joys of a smooth new commute courtesy of their brand-new interchange instead found themselves in a traffic jam yesterday as dozens of buses got backed up by poorly timed traffic lights.

The buses in question were stuck in long queues while waiting to turn into the interchange — which only opened on Sunday — during yesterday’s morning and evening rush hours, numerous photos and videos posted to Facebook and Twitter show, with some complaining it added an extra 30 minutes to their traveling time.

On the plus side, we’re in the middle of the September school holidays, which means the traffic jam didn’t equal busloads of students late for school, too.

Fourteen of the affected bus services were operated by SBS Transit, according to their tweet at 5pm yesterday. They finally announced services were “back to normal” about five hours later.

Theories among affected bus commuters abounded on Twitter, where many identified the traffic light signals outside the bus interchange as the culprit, saying they were simply changing too quickly to allow the buses time to move. The Straits Times seemed to confirm that today, reporting that the timing of those signals had been tweaked to allow for smooth traffic this morning.

Others, however, suggested the new bus interchange might simply be too small to accommodate all the buses. 

Meanwhile, the rest took to social media to vent their frustrations over the “bad planning.” 

The new bus interchange — operated by SMRT — was built as part of the town’s integrated transport hub, comprising an underpass linking the bus interchange to the Yishun MRT station and the Northpoint City mall.

Coconuts Singapore has reached out to SMRT for comment and will update this story as soon as more information becomes available.

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