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Hello there! I’m Su Lin, owner and initiator of vectordesigns. I say initiator because vectordesigns was set up as the official face of something that was meant to be a project for social good (which partly explains the “.org” domain name, although “.org” was also cheaper ?), besides being a business that had to pay for itself.

You see, for some time in the early 2000s (yes, noughties), I had been thinking of publishing a Kuala Lumpur public transport map. At that time, I thought I’d seen a hole in the market. New public transport infrastructure had been put into place – the LRTs and Monorail mainly – but a car driver like myself wouldn’t have had a clue on how to start using it. The thought of a walking lifestyle within a compact urban landscape was beguiling. It was one that was free of cars, parking, etc, and that was fully immersed in society rather than isolated in bubbles, as those fat future people were in Wall-E.

Also, I knew people, friends visiting, maids, who didn’t have cars. I thought this would provide them some independence in moving around. Of course, there was also the environmental argument, and the pure challenge of bringing together disparate information to make of it a beautiful system.

I use the past tense mostly because I have a rather modified view of the matter now. Yes, public transport has improved even within the tenure of RapidKL, since say 2005. There is now something of a more cohesive system that encompasses the LRTs and buses.

There is unfortunately still a long way to go however. Even before the 2008 elections, services were not sufficiently brought up to mark. There were times when disappointed commuters ended up waiting 45 minutes for a bus. RapidKL should endeavour for a maximum of 15 minutes’ wait throughout all routes, and timetables otherwise. With Penang having been punished by the withdrawal of RapidPenang after the 2008 elections furthermore, I hope RapidKL does not suffer any, even if partially, similar fate.

Besides shorter frequencies, RapidKL has to be responsive to the commuters and treat them as customers, providing information and accountability, rather than throwing out piecemeal services which follow mysterious routes and times.

Thankfully there are some people who believe enough in the social benefits of public transport to give an iota of thought to it, well actually, a lot of thought and effort. I’m talking about the people who set up http://transitmy.org, and also KL Commuter although he/she hasn’t been active recently as I know it. If you are a public transport user, do support them because we can only be stronger together.

Unfortunately I can’t because, from mid 2008, I moved to London to be with my husband (as intimated in the title of this text). Nevertheless, after all the effort put into gathering this information, I would still like maintain and update this information as much as possible. Hopefully it may contribute to improved public transport services and a more mobile, accessible, integrated and healthier Kuala Lumpur.

At the same time, this site shall be the repository of whatever else related to the original intentions of setting up vectordesigns – ideas and products related to the mobile urban life that I’d envisioned. Which is why I’ve now changed the tagline, if you can call it that, from “spatially enabled media” (because we offered digital mapping programme services as well) to “urban mobility”. In the meantime, do contact me at sulin at vectordesigns dot org if you have any further queries.

 

 move (315°, 10000 km)
 Jan 09