GEORGE TOWN: The Penang state government is awaiting written reviews by port authorities about the proposed undersea tunnel project, chief minister Chow Kon Yeow said today.
A long-delayed feasibility study on the project had been presented to the state executive council last month by the tunnel concession company Consortium Zenith Construction Sdn Bhd (CZC), he said.
However, the state government will only make a decision on the implementation of the project once it receives written reviews from the Penang Port Commission and Penang Port Sdn Bhd, which have strong reservations about the project, Bernama reported.
“So, we will wait for the written reviews from these two important agencies as this undersea tunnel will be in the path of vessels plying the channel. Both agencies have given their views to the project consultant,” he told a media conference.
Chow said the written review was needed so that the state government could make further considerations although technically, the findings show that the project could be implemented.
“However, since it involves issues concerning state waters, ports included, we will just wait,” he said, according to Bernama.
The 6.5km-long undersea tunnel and roads project is among those included in the RM46 billion Penang Transport Master Plan.
CZC was reported to have completed the feasibility study at the end of 2020 after a four-year delay and handed it over to the state government in December the same year.
The feasibility study began in December 2014 and was supposed to be completed in 2016 but was delayed due to various factors.
It was reported that the state government has not ruled out the possibility of building a bridge as the third link between the island to the mainland as an alternative.