Thursday, June 10, 2010

Public transport revolution planned for Greater KL

Kuala Lumpur and its satellites will experience a public transport revolution if the government can successfully implement plans for a mass rapid transit system under the 10th Malaysia Plan (10MP). The ultimate goal of the upgrading blitz is to increase the use of public transport from 12 percent in 2009 to 30 percent by the end of the 10MP in 2015, and depending on the success of the Greater KL initiatives, the plan will also be rolled out to other cities and urban areas nationwide.
Will the plan be implemented after so many years of promises after promises?
How is the plan possible with more and more private vehicles on the road?

@ The Sun
KL under pressure
> Infrastructure might not be able to cope with growing number of vehicles
by Meena L. Ramadas

High intensity
should be
supported by
proper and
– Norliza
TOWN planners are concerned that the infrastructure in Kuala Lumpur will not be able to handle the heavy movement of privately owned vehicles in and out of the city, ultimately leading to even worse traffic congestion.

Norliza Hashim (pix), a Draft Kuala Lumpur City Plan 2020 consultant, said this is due to the escalating number of commercial zones in the city which are replacing what were previously residential and mixed development areas.

Residential areas, meanwhile, are pushed to the city fringes as suburbs.

Norliza said as more people move to the suburbs, there is a growing amount of people who travel to the city centre every day for work.

This puts pressure on the current infrastructure and steps up the demand for better transportation and mobility to reduce congestion in Kuala Lumpur, she added.

Norliza said one of the core problems is that there is too much movement of private vehicles into and out of the inner city.

She said a total of 33 million sq m, an increase of 32% from the 2008 KL plan, has been allocated for commercial development. Most of these are slated on what previously used to be residential and mixed development areas.

“The number of private vehicles entering the city centre in 2005 was 1.26 million private car users (pcu) per day,” she said during a presentation at a City Hall two-day workshop on public transport last Monday.

Norliza said this exceeded the forecast of the Strategies for Managing Urban Transport in Kuala Lumpur (Smurt-KL) study which estimated 1.18 million pcu entering the city per day in 2010.

“High intensity development should be supported by proper and adequate infrastructure,” she said, adding the main concern now is the provision of excellent transport systems to support a growing commercial space.

“People are feeling the pinch; it is now hotter, infrastructure provision is delayed, and we are still taking care of yesterday’s problems while approving projects for the future.”

She said among areas receiving pressure from commercialisation and more intense development are KLCC, Kampung Baru, along Jalan Tun Razak, Jalan Loke Yew, Tengkat Tong Shin and Jalan Davis.

The pressure and demands on the city’s infrastructure is also compounded by the population boom.

“The projected population growth for the city in 2020 is 2.2 million, and even with the current population of approximately 1.7 million, people are already feeling the over crowding.”

Norliza said currently, only 10% of Kuala Lumpur, or 2,662ha, is served by rail transit stations while 24%, or 5,894ha, falls within the transit corridor.

This means a wide area of 15,665ha is neither directly nor indirectly served by the rail network, which includes LRT and monorail.

Under the Draft KL City Plan 2020, the proposed extension of urban rail will increase the area covered by the rail network to 52%, she said. This includes a total 11 lines with 119 new stations covering areas such as Sri Petaling, Alam Damai, Sentul, Pasar Selayang, Sri Rampai, National Zoo and Bandar Tun Hussein Onn.

Updated: 09:07AM Mon, 24 May 2010

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