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Friday April 18, 2008

Commuter line for suburbs


KUALA LUMPUR: A new commuter rail line by KTM Bhd to connect major suburbs in the Klang Valley is awaiting final approval.

Called the Outer Ring Railway Service, commuters will be able to travel to Sentul, Kepong, Sungai Buloh, Kelana Jaya, Cheras and Bandar Tasik Selatan without having to go through the city centre.

KTMB managing director Datuk Mohd Salleh Abdullah said the proposed route would span about 70km and run in a circular loop on an elevated track.

He told reporters after a visit by Transport Minister Datuk Ong Tee Keat to the KTMB headquarters here yesterday that similar public transportation models were used in London and Japan.

On track: Ong being briefed by KTMB managing director Datuk Mohd Salleh Abdullah on operations at the KL railway station on Thursday.

Ong said KTMB had proposed the integrated commuter railway service to help overcome traffic congestion in the Klang Valley.

“It is to connect the suburban areas in the Klang Valley, as some of these suburbs have no railway link. The new line is expected to be linked with the existing rail network,” he said.

Ong said the ministry was studying the proposal, which was submitted to the previous Cabinet.

“It is at a proposal level, and we have not looked into the details yet. We have yet to discuss the budget, and we are (now) discussing the destinations (for the service).

“The main aim is to bypass KL city centre. The plan is on the drawing board, and we will need to work hard on the details,” he said.

Currently, the KTM Komuter service runs from Port Klang to Sentul, and Seremban to Kuala Kubu Baru. Both lines go through the KL Sentral station.

On another matter, Ong said he had directed Road Transport Department (JPJ) officers to hold talks with their counterparts in the police force to speed up the integration of databases between the agencies to help enforce traffic and transportation laws in view of the recent wave of bus accidents.

“Information should be available anytime to multiple agencies so that no loophole exists,” he said.

Ong added that it was important to pool together the records on summonses held by the police and the JPJ.

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