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Published: Thursday June 5, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Thursday June 5, 2014 MYT 11:46:57 AM

Temporary bridge neglected

Danger zone: The walkway connecting the Plaza Rakyat LRT station to Pudu Sentral is more than a decade old and is in urgent need of repairs.

Danger zone: The walkway connecting the Plaza Rakyat LRT station to Pudu Sentral is more than a decade old and is in urgent need of repairs.

A 300m elevated walkway connecting the Plaza Rakyat LRT station to Pudu Sentral is in a dilapidated condition and looks like it may give way any time soon.

The bridge was built in 1995 by the developer of the abandoned Plaza Rakyat project, but it was meant to be a temporary structure which would be used for five years.

Since then, no one has taken responsibility to maintain it as the land belongs to the developer of the stalled project.

StarMetro visited the site recently and discovered that the walkway, made of metal chequer plates, is rickety and rusty. Several beams were also missing, making the six-metre drop a scary prospect for unwary pedestrians.

The soil underneath the walkway looks like it has been eroding bit by bit and is on the verge of collapsing.

A huge TNB switchboard and cable has been abandoned at the site.

The soft earth surrounding the structure looked like it might collapse under the weight, bringing down everything including the walkway.

“My heart skips a beat each time I use the walkway,’’ said Sabariah Mahmud, a clerk who works nearby.

“I take the LRT every day to get to work and I use the bridge to get to my office in Kota Raya,’’ Sabariah added.

A civil engineer with the MRT project nearby, who wished to remain anonymous, expressed concern about the safety of the bridge.

“Every time I use the bridge, I worry that it might fall any time soon. It is only a temporary structure and not meant to be used for so many years,’’ he said.

More than 10,000 people use the walkway every day to get to Pudu Sentral. The walkway provides a direct link from the Plaza Rakyat LRT station to the terminal.

There have been calls for either UDA Holdings Bhd or Syarikat Prasarana Negara Bhd (Prasarana), that manage the Pudu Sentral and Plaza Rakyat LRT station, respectively, to take responsibility and refurbish the walkway.

But when contacted, spokesmen from both companies said their hands were tied as the walkway was on private land.

“Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) should get the developer to carry out rectification work,’’ said UDA Holdings Bhd’s chairman Datuk Johari Abdul Ghani.

Johari, who is also Titiwangsa MP, said if safety was an issue, the bridge should be closed until repairs were completed.

Prasarana spokesman Azhar Ghazali said the company has been maintaining the metal walkway but could not do much due to jurisdiction issues.

Talks are under way to revive the Plaza Rakyat project.

Tags / Keywords: Government, Community, Central Region, Transport & Safety, Plaza Rakyat bridge

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