PRASARANA Malaysia Bhd is expecting to serve 1.5 million commuters each day by the middle of next year, said its president and group chief executive officer Datuk Azmi Abdul Aziz.
Speaking at a recent event to mark Prasarana hitting the one million mark, Azmi said the increase from the current one million commuters a day would come from the full completion of the LRT extension programme (LEP) that connects the Kelana Jaya and Ampang lines by this June, as well as the opening of the first phase of the Klang Valley MRT from Sungai Buloh to Semantan (12 stations) this December.
The completion of the second phase of the Ampang line extension will add another seven stations to the network by end of March, while the Kelana Jaya line extension will add 13 stations.
By then, ridership on the Ampang and Putra lines is expected to go up by 90,000 and 170,000 each day, respectively.
Meanwhile, the KL monorail is running on a mix of four-car sets with shorter train sets to serve 72,000 commuters daily.
Through Rapid Bus Sdn Bhd, Prasarana has 1,260 buses covering 139 routes in Klang Valley and Selangor, and is in the process of adding 40 double-decker buses for busy routes.
The Government will continue to inject an annual operational subsidy of RM14mil for the first three years to Prasarana, the parent company Rapid Bus, to partly defray operational costs of the Sunway BRT line.
The full implementation of the Bus Network Revamp (BNR) by the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) is also expected to increase ridership in Klang Valley by increasing capacity in popular routes and deploying more buses to underserved or new neighbourhoods.
SPAD had directed bus operators under the BNR network to deploy 56 additional buses to increase frequencies to reduce waiting time for commuters in the Jalan Ipoh Corridor, the Sungai Besi Corridor and along the Federal Highway serving high demand areas such as Kepong, Selayang, Puchong, Serdang, and the route from Putrajaya to Bandar Utama.
Prasarana’s golden mark of 1,001,800 passengers was achieved by adding the ridership of trains and buses, with its bus passengers in Penang and Kuantan.
Rail contributed 460,072, with the bulk coming from the Kelana Jaya line (265,000).
The event at KL Sentral that coincided with the run-up to the Chinese New Year season was also attended by SPAD chairman Tan Sri Syed Hamid Albar, Prasarana chairman Tan Sri Ismail Adam, and SPAD chief executive officer Mohd Azharuddin Mat Sah.
A troupe from the Kok Hing Dragon and Lion Dance Association provided the fanfare with a pair of lions and the Chinese New Year mascot, the monkey, whose presence on trains gave many commuters a pleasant surprise when they handed out mandarin oranges.