Bus Interchanges and Terminals

In Singapore, a Bus interchange or Bus terminal is a public transport facility that functions as the start and end point of any bus route. This definition can be extended to any layover point that does not cause an obstruction to traffic. There are currently 26 bus interchanges and 19 bus terminals in operation.

Bishan Interchange - Bus Park
Bishan Interchange – Bus Park

Bus interchanges and termini serve multiple roles in Singapore. They are used as layover points for various bus services, and regionalization of bus terminating points allow for easy transfer between multiple bus services. Drivers may also swap buses at termini.

Types of bus interchanges and terminals:

  • Bus interchanges
  • Temporary bus interchanges
  • Integrated transport hubs
  • Bus terminals / Bus parks
  • Roadside bus terminals
  • Bus depots
 
 





Bus Interchanges

A Bus interchange (referred to as a Bus station outside of Singapore) is a large facility handling many bus routes and usually offers connections to the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) network. As such, they are an integral part of Singapore’s hub-and-spoke public transportation system, where commuters frequently rely on buses for ‘last-mile’ connections from Town Centres to their homes.

List of Bus Interchanges in Singapore:

Bus Terminals

A Bus Terminal is a smaller facility used as a regional terminating point for bus services. While the majority are dedicated facilities, there are a handful of ‘roadside’ bus terminals with minimal infrastructure. Some bus terminals do not allow for passenger boarding and alighting.

List of Bus Terminals in Singapore:

Others

Upcoming Bus Interchanges & Terminals:

List of Bus Terminals in Johor Bahru:

Terminals Served by Singapore Public Transport Operators

For a full list of bus terminals served by Malaysian bus operators, check out Other Bus Terminals In Johor Bahru.

List of abolished Bus Interchanges and Terminals:

* – Alighting only.
Italics – Other bus operators

In addition, several bus services terminate at bus stops which do not count as bus termini. These include Service 42 (near Kembangan MRT Station), CW5 (Newton Circus carpark) and CW6 (Boon Lay Way, near Boon Lay MRT).


History:

In the past, private bus companies built and operated their own bus termini. They were usually located along the roads and were plenty in number, adding to the difficulty of integrating various different bus routes. In the 1970s, smaller-scaled bus terminals were built, most of them by the Public Works Department (PWD) and the Housing and Development Board (HDB). The private bus companies would then rent these terminals for thousands of dollars per month.

In the late seventies, the construction of new towns resulted in the idea of regional bus interchanges to take over the roles of the bus terminals. This would improve efficiency and reduce overlapping of bus routes. In 1978, the Jurong Bus Interchange became Singapore’s first bus interchange. The early bus interchanges were mainly shared by the SBS, TIBS, SSB and Scheme B bus operators. Until the completion of the Woodlands Bus Interchange in 1996 by the Mass Rapid Transit Corporation (MRTC), all the early bus interchanges were designed and built by the Housing and Development Board (HDB), which was also the main architect of bus stops and other facilities for the public transport.

With the construction of the MRT in the 1980s, bus transport in Singapore slowly adapted in favor of centralised bus interchanges that provide connections to the MRT, and the use of multiple feeder bus services to link up different parts of new towns with MRT stations.

In the modern era, bus interchanges were further redesigned to provide greater comfort and integration. Toa Payoh and Sengkang Bus Interchanges were among the first to be fully air-conditioned and fully integrated with their basement MRT stations. Sengkang Interchange was also the first to integrate residential development with bus interchanges by the use of fully enclosed bus interchanges, i.e. the entire interchange occupies the ground floors of the building, a concept previously used extensively in land-starved Hong Kong. Integrated Public Transport Hubs have been built at Ang Mo Kio, Bedok, Serangoon, Boon Lay, Clementi and Joo Koon, and more are expected to be completed in the next decade, such as Bukit Panjang, Hougang, Jurong East, Marina South and Yishun.

Today, bus interchanges are designed and constructed by the Land Transport Authority (LTA), but are managed by the bus operator which operates the majority of bus services from the interchange (and with the rollout of the Bus Contracting Model, bus interchanges/terminals are allocated to bus operators). Some bus terminals do not allow for passenger boarding and alighting.

In the early 2010s, bus interchanges have been used for overnight parking of buses due to lack of parking space within bus depots, but the practice has been curtailed with the construction of more bus parks.


Facilities:

Bus interchanges (and some terminals) have one or more of such facilities:

  • Interchange Office
    Staffed by the bus operators, this office is the management center of any bus interchange. It handles passenger inquiries, timekeeping for bus services and various other interchange operations. They usually have a computer terminal for drivers to clock the start and end of their scheduled trips.
  • TransitLink Office
    Staffed by TransitLink personnel, this office mainly handles contactless card transactions among other services.
  • Drivers’ lounge
    Where bus drivers take a break before their next departure.
  • NTWU Canteen
    The National Transport Workers’ Union (NTWU) manages a group of canteens known as NTWU canteens which are commonly found at major bus interchanges. They provide healthy and low-cost meals for bus drivers, and are also open to members of the public.
  • Parking lots for the layover of buses
  • Waiting berths
    Berths are pick-up areas for buses. Most major interchanges have three services assigned to a berth, with queuing areas for passengers.
  • Alighting berths
    Buses terminating at the interchange drop off passengers here before heading to park
  • Information board
    Public transport operators design various information boards for their interchanges such as locality maps, bus service maps and bus information.
  • Bus arrival displays
    This electronic bus arrival board contains timings of the next scheduled bus departure.
  • Service guide rack
    Commonly found in SBST-operated interchanges, the service guide rack is stocked with paper guides containing details of various bus services.
  • Stalls
    In recent years, bus operators have opened various stalls at their bus interchanges to increase profits by renting them out to vendors. Food stalls are among the most common.
  • Toilets
    Some bus interchanges charge a small fee for members of the public.
  • Phone Booths

Do check out our other bus articles by clicking here.

One thought on “Bus Interchanges and Terminals

  • 28 January 2017 at 8:36 PM
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    The Upcoming Bus Interchanges & Terminals section should include Woodlands North Integrated Transport Hub. It was mentioned in the URA website (under the Master Plan section) that “an integrated transport hub at the heart of the Woodlands North Coast will house offices, shops and restaurants above a bus interchange and connect underground to the Woodlands North MRT Station and cross-border rail link to Johor”.

    Reply

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