First impressions about the new Marina Coastal Expressway

I decided to take a spin onto the new Marina Coastal Expressway today.  And my first impression is that it is screwed up. Not the highway per se. The highway is top-notch. Five lanes in each direction. Fantastic surface where you don’t hear the tires at all. Smooth and probably worth the S$5billlion spent on the 5km expressway.

So, what’s wrong?  Here’s my list:

a) *Anyone* travelling from the West to the East (say to Fort Road), you will, if you choose to go via the AYE, be then marshalled into MCE (which is quite sweet I must say). You continue in the MCE and since you are goint to the East, you have to KEEP TO THE TWO LEFT lanes to make sure that you then get into the exit of MCE to ECP. So, 4 lanes of AYE, becomes 5 lanes of MCE then 2 lanes of the exit and then onto ECP/Fort Road. Yes, TWO lanes to ECP. I repeat, TWO lanes. If you MISSED this exit, you will continue from MCE into KPE and then have to turn around somewhere to undo your mistake.

b) If you are coming from the West and want to go to Rochor. Good luck. You’ll have to exit in the MCE – ie take an exit and go INTO the Central Business District – yes, ERP  and traffic light infested zone – and then navigate to the Rochor area. I did not take that exit on MCE today as I was not happy with what I saw in a) above.

c) You are coming from the East and want to down town. There is an exit that brings you to the Central Boulevard, but because the roads on the surface after exiting the MCE are still being realigned, it is a mess for now. I reckon those will be straightened out over the next few months.

d) You are coming down Ophir Road expecting to go West. Although I did not try that today, you will go up the ramp and go over the Sheares Bridge on to the South side of Marina Bay Sands (which was part of the ECP but no longer called the ECP but Sheares Avenue) and then navigate to enter the MCE and then onto the West.  Not sure of the swamp you will be in with lights and reduced lanes.

I am not happy with the way the MCE is breaking all the connections and travel patterns we have had with some yet to be proven improvements in traffic flow. I am very sure that the biggest congestion will be a the exit from MCE to ECP because of the lane reduction.

I cannot understand how the LTA could have royally screwed up with the MCE and how traffic flows. I am really disappointed. I could be completely wrong as I only saw a part of the how the MCE’s introduction changes the traffic flow. But I bet you, the mess will be enormous over the next week or so as people begin to adjust to the new realities.

I would like to perhaps suggest that MCE be temporarily changed from Marina Coastal Expressway to Most Cocked-up Expressway until the whole MCE plan is rolled out.


  1. Hey Harish, cocking up the road systems is nothing new for LTA. Familiar stories in the past starting with the first PIE where you get 4 then 3 and 2 lanes bridge over Kallang. Years later they widened it in parts to present day.
    Then ECP. Same foul up. You thought they learned after the PIE. But no, you get 4 lanes going into 2 lanes over Fort Rd and 3 over Tg Katong.
    They widened them faster than they did PIE though.
    Then CTE. 4 lanes narrowing to 3 over the AMKs and Braddel. Plus the exit lanes narrowing the bridge further.
    It seems the LTA do work in bits and pieces probably to retain their work. Or else they run out of excuses to improve or widen the roads for our conveniences. I laughed when I saw these signs. What a way to cover up their fxxk ups!

    • I really cannot understand how after all the monies spent, they can still screw up.

      I would also propose that the DownTown Line be renamed to UpTown Line in view of the number of “DOWN”s the line had since opening.

  2. I saw a heavy oil tanker from exp to mce cannot enter in due to height restriction. It block off one of the 2 lanes. Really the planner really screw up big time for MCE. This project is a joke now. Agree?

    • Would have been great if you had a photo of the tanker trying to do this. It helps to flag and post these issues and give additional positive inputs to correct a bad design.

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