Sarawak in logging road restoration plan

Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah speaking to reporters at the Gawai open house in Kuching. - ZULAZHAR SHEBLEE/The Star

KUCHING: Sarawak will rehabilitate 14 abandoned logging roads under a RM543mil funding plan to provide convenience and safer travel into remote settlements.

Many logging roads, which were constructed by timber companies to transport out harvested logs from concession areas, have served as the sole road link to the interiors from towns for decades.

According to Sarawak Deputy Premier and Infrastructure and Port Development Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah, out of the 14 abandoned logging roads, including those linking to famous highland Ba’Kelalan and interior villages in Northern Sarawak, four of them are currently being rehabilitated and the remaining 10 roads are under pre-contract stage.

He said the conditions of many of the logging roads had deteriorated due to irregular maintenance.

Under the Jiwa Murni programme, Uggah said 16 projects worth RM928mil have been implemented. The projects involved the construction of 461km of “Low Volume Rural Road” and 82 bailey bridges.

A total of 14 of these projects have been completed and handed over to the Sarawak Public Works Department for maintenance and the remaining two projects are still under the defect liability period.

Meanwhile, following the near full completion of the RM16bil Sarawak Pan Borneo Highway project (Phase 1), the Works Ministry plans to upgrade a 140-km stretch “redline” alignment along the highway.

Minister Datuk Alexander Nanta Linggi said recently the ministry has requested for RM1bil from the federal government to fund the upgrading work of the “redline” alignment, which refers to the existing original routes built before the construction of the Pan Borneo Highway.

He said these original routes have to be upgraded to meet the highway standards. The 145-km stretch involves areas in Kuching, Serian, Sibu, Bintulu, Julau and Miri.

Phase Two of the Sarawak Pan Borneo Highway will link Limbang and Lawas in the northern region via Brunei Darussalam.

Currently under construction, the Phase Two project,which connects Long Lopeng and Miri, is being implemented by various government agencies, including the Regional Corridor Development Authority and Rural Development Ministry.

Also under implementation is the Sarawak-Sabah Link Road (SSLR).

It includes a 77-km stretch from Simpang Gelugus to Long Lopeng in Lawas, which is being constructed by Samling Resources Sdn Bhd.

The 425-km SSLR project, which will connect 14 major towns in Sarawak and Sabah from Miri, was earlier targeted for completion in 2026.

The total cost of the Phase Two Pan Borneo Highway and SSLR projects were originally estimated to cost the federal government RM12bil.

Two other mega road projects – the Sarawak Second Trunk Road and Sarawak Coastal Road Network – are currently in various stages of implementation.

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Sarawak , logging , timber , Amar Douglas Uggah


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