MRT Corp voices concerns, worried about LRT 3 integration point at Bandar Utama

The Bandar Utama MRTstation is proposed to be built at the empty space next to the Media Prima broadcasting centre located along  Persiaran Bandar Utama.

The Bandar Utama MRTstation is proposed to be built at the empty space next to the Media Prima broadcasting centre located along Persiaran Bandar Utama.

KUALA LUMPUR: Mass Rapid Transit Corp Sdn Bhd (MRT Corp) has voiced its concerns on the integration issue between its Sungai Buloh–Kajang (SBK) Line and the proposed third Light Rapid Transit (LRT 3) line.

StarBiz on May 12 broke the news that the new LRT 3 in the Klang Valley was in the final stages of approval by the Government.

LRT 3 is slated to start in Bandar Utama, Damansara and cut across Shah Alam towards its final destination in Klang. The proposed 36km LRT 3 is estimated to cost RM9bil and should be undertaken by Syarikat Prasarana Negara Bhd.

The news caught MRT Corp by surprise especially on the integration point in Bandar Utama. StarBiz had highlighted this issue several times quoting sources.

According to MRT Corp, it has yet to open any discussion with Prasarana on any integration between its SBK Line and LRT 3 line.

“Although reports have emerged over the last two months of a proposed LRT 3 line from Bandar Utama to Klang, MRT Corp has received formal notification from Land Public Transport Commission that the proposed line was “still being studied”.

“This was in reply to our letter dated June 13 enquiring on reports that LRT 3 will integrate with our own One Utama Station in Bandar Utama,” said MRT Corp CEO Datuk Wira Azhar Abdul Hamid in a statement yesterday.

He added that the letter stated that socio-economic impact studies, environmental impact assessment, technical as well as operational issues of the LRT 3 line have not been completed.

“The letter however did not state the targeted date of approval of the project,” said Azhar.

Earlier news reports had indicated that LRT 3 will integrate with SBK Line’s One Utama Station, boosting rail connectivity for Klang and Petaling Jaya residents.

The reports had also raised concern that such integration would need to be sorted quickly to ensure that any integration would be cost efficient to MRT Corp and that it could also avoid poor integration such as the existing link between the Ampang Line and the Kelana Jaya Line at Masjid Jamek Station.

“The reports are right, as any integration must be planned ahead. Ideally, for the commuters benefit, it should be a seamless, paid link, and one that requires minimal linkways, given that the LRT 3 and our SBK Lines are new or lines under construction.”

“For us to integrate efficiently, we would have to make changes to our station design and access points. It will of course incur abortive and additional design costs.

“There will be a point when this seamless integration becomes impossible as the SBK Line proceeds with construction,” explained Azhar.

Still, he welcomed the government’s push for more rail links in the Klang Valley.

“It is a positive move for sure. The KVMRT (Klang Valley Mass Rapid Transit) project is aimed at reducing traffic congestion in the Klang Valley.

The LRT 3 Line, if realised, will provide an option for residents of the Klang–Petaling Jaya corridor to commute between the two cities and beyond without adding to traffic congestion,” Azhar said.

The SBK Line runs for 51km along a corridor catchment of 1.2 million people. Phase One between Sungai Buloh and Damansara Heights is expected to be operational by December 2016, while the entire line ending in Kajang will be operational by July 2017.

The project is currently 45.6% complete, slightly ahead of schedule.

On the SBK Line, MRT Corp in another statement said it had awarded three contracts for the line, with a total value of RM67.2mil.

The awards were made by the One-Stop Procurement Committee (OSPC) chaired by Secretary-General to the Treasury, Tan Sri Dr Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah.

The OSPC awarded the contract for the supply, delivery and supervision of installation, testing and commissioning of step down distribution transformers for all MRT underground stations and ancillary buildings to PTIS Engineering Sdn Bhd worth RM7.4mil.

The OSPC also awarded a contract worth RM44.5mil for the design, procurement, configuration, installation, testing and commission of the IT system for all elevated and underground stations as well as depots to EV-Dynamic Sdn Bhd.

Meanwhile, the RM15.3mil contract for the supply, procurement, installation, testing and commissioning of the lift system for all MRT underground stations and ancillary buildings was awarded to Eita Elevator (M) Sdn Bhd.

With the latest decision of the OSPC, a total of 77 work packages have been awarded.

One work package is currently being called while seven work packages have yet to be called.