Transport ministry to brief Penang CM on progress of 2016 LRT proposal

Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow. (Bernama pic)

GEORGE TOWN: Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow will meet officials from the transport ministry on the state’s plans for a Light Rail Transit (LRT) line next Tuesday.

Chow said he would meet Transport Minister Anthony Loke and receive a special briefing by the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) in Putrajaya.

The meeting comes after Loke’s recent statement that an LRT project “might not be the best” option for Penang island. Loke said trams and other options might be the best fit.

At a press conference today, Chow said his meeting on the LRT would come more than two years after he submitted the plans as the local government committee chairman to SPAD in March 2016.

“We are interested to know after two years plus what they have done with our submission. Hopefully, SPAD will share with us their concerns.

“And our team from the state government will be there to say why we are opting for the LRT. After the meeting we will share more info with the people of Penang,” he said in Komtar.

Civil society groups have put up a fight against the LRT project, but supporters of the project say the LRT line will ease massive rush hour traffic on the island and improve safety, compared with driving.

The proposed Bayan Lepas LRT line will be about 30km in length with 27 stations running from Komtar, the state government seat, to the proposed three islands to be reclaimed from the waters in the south.

The line will serve the industrial area in Bayan Lepas and passengers from the Penang International Airport. It will cross residential townships and employment hubs in Jelutong, Gelugor, Batu Uban, Bayan Baru, Sg Tiram and Batu Maung.