Odd/even date entry restriction has been effective in alleviating the queue situation outside the top four popular markets, with little or no queues observed outside these markets on weekdays. NEA will lift the odd/even date entry restriction at these markets on weekdays, starting from 13 August 2020.
Singapore, 11 August 2020 – With effect from 13 August 2020, the National Environment Agency (NEA) will lift the odd/even date entry restriction at the top four popular markets on weekdays, as part of its gradual resumption of activities in these markets in Phase Two. The four popular markets are Geylang Serai Market, Block 104/105 Yishun Ring Road (Chong Pang Market), Block 20/21 Marsiling Lane, and Block 505 Jurong West Street 52.
Odd/even date entry restriction has been effective, with little or no queues observed at the four popular markets on weekdays
2 At the start of Circuit Breaker (CB), access control was implemented at 39 popular markets where patrons would have to queue outside the market once the number of patrons inside the market had reached the stipulated allowable capacity. This was to create enough space to ensure effective safe distancing within the market. As long queues started to form outside a few popular markets, the odd/even date entry restriction was also implemented on 22 April 2020 at four of the most popular markets. Under this system, patrons’ access to these markets is restricted based on the last digit of their National Registration Identification Card (NRIC) or Foreign Identification Number (FIN), where those with an odd last digit (1, 3, 5, 7, 9) can only visit these markets on the odd dates of the month and those with an even last digit (0, 2, 4, 6, 8) can only visit these markets on the even dates of the month.
3 NEA has been closely monitoring the situation at the four popular markets for the past three months. We have observed that the odd/even date entry restriction has been effective in significantly reducing the queues outside the four markets. While the queue situation does vary across the four markets, there is generally little or no queues observed outside these markets on weekdays. Queues are still observed on certain weekends at some of these markets, and the crowd is generally about 20-40 per cent more on weekends than weekdays.
Easing odd/even date entry restriction at the four popular markets on weekdays
4 Given the manageable queue situation on weekdays, NEA will lift the odd/even date entry restriction at the four popular markets on weekdays, starting from 13 August 2020. Safe distancing within the market will not be compromised as the access control system which caps the number of patrons who can be inside the market at any one time will still be in place. The odd/even date entry restriction will remain in place on weekends. By lifting the odd/even date entry restriction on weekdays, we hope that more patrons will also visit these popular markets on a weekday instead of a weekend.
5 To minimise crowding and ensure effective safe distancing, we continue to urge patrons to visit markets on weekdays wherever possible, or at the non-peak period between 10:00am to12:00pm on weekends. The crowd during this time window can be up to 50 per cent less than the early morning and fresh produce continues to be available at markets up to noon. We seek the understanding of members of the public that calibrated resumption of activities in the markets is necessary for us to continue keeping the likelihood of community transmission to a minimum.
6 Patrons to these markets are also reminded that they can refer to Space Out (www.spaceout.gov.sg) to obtain crowd level information, such as the length of the queue waiting to enter these markets when they have reached the allowable capacity.
Social responsibility is key
7 Social responsibility is critical in slowing the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019). With the easing of the odd/even date entry restriction on weekdays at the four popular markets, we urge members of the public to continue to adhere to safe distancing measures and visit the markets on weekdays or non-peak hours on weekends wherever possible. We will monitor the situation closely and will continue to review the safe management measures at markets and hawker centres as part of the gradual re-opening.
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‘Safe Management Measures at 4 Markets’ Visual