Motorists irked by added traffic on Jalan Cheras

Motorists complain the SUKE divider running parallel with Jalan Cheras has added another stream of traffic turning left into Jalan Medan Masria. — AZMAN GHANI/The Star

MOTORISTS entering Jalan Medan Masria at 9th mile, Jalan Cheras in Selangor, have expressed frustration over added traffic since the opening of the Sungai Besi-Ulu Kelang Elevated Expressway (SUKE).

Jalan Medan Masria is a main thoroughfare along the Cheras-Kajang Expressway (CKE) that provides motorists access to 15 housing areas, and the SUKE runs parallel to CKE and Jalan Cheras.

The motorists complain that a new traffic lights junction and a road divider built to complement the SUKE has created a long traffic queue.

Nurshuhada Sharon Abdullah, 48, an affected resident from Taman Cheras Awana, said the extra traffic lights at the SUKE turning into Jalan Medan Masria was causing a backlog of vehicles from as far as Taman Cheras Hartamas, near the Bukit Teratai toll plaza, during peak hours.

“We used to have smooth flowing traffic at this turning.

“Now we get stuck in a long queue before reaching home,” she said.

The traffic situation is not only affecting those turning into Jalan Medan Masria, as those living in housing areas further down the highway alignment are feeling the frustration as well.

Taman Suntex resident Lim Seng Kok, 55, said traffic congestion due to the convergence of traffic from three to two lanes from the CKE exit into Jalan Cheras was already problematic during peak hours.

“The addition of the SUKE divider running parallel with Jalan Cheras is making things worse.

“Before, there was only one stream of traffic turning left.

“Now the divider is adding another stream.

“This means traffic from Jalan Cheras will have to wait for traffic on SUKE before turning into Jalan Medan Masria.

“This is causing traffic backlog, making the journey home for many residents a frustrating one,” said Lim.

Dusun Tua assemblyman Edry Faizal Eddy Yusof said the traffic situation could have been eased if a slip road from the St Francis of Assisi Church at the 7th mile of Jalan Cheras to Jalan Medan Masria was opened together on Sept 16 with Phase 1 of the SUKE, a 16.6km alignment from Cheras-Kajang interchange to Bukit Antarabangsa interchange.

The slip road now is still closed to traffic.

“The solution of a slip road was brought up in 2018 during a discussion between the residents associations, Projek Lintasan Kota Holdings and the Malaysian Highway Authority,” said Edry.

“We were told this would solve the existing traffic woes.”

He said motorists had complained that during peak hours, traffic congestion was at least 2km long and the waiting time to turn into Jalan Medan Masria could be up to 45 minutes.

When contacted, Projek Lintasan Kota Holdings corporate communications division assistant manager Raza Syazani Muhammad said the opening of the slip road would be announced later.

In an earlier report, Works Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof said the new expressway was expected to disperse traffic up to 36% along Middle Ring Road 2, Jalan Ampang and Ampang toll plaza during peak hours.

Journeys were anticipated to be reduced from 75 minutes to 20 minutes. As of Aug 30, SUKE was 98% completed.

The remaining 7.8km alignment, which is still under construction, involves Alam Damai Toll Plaza and three interchanges, all expected to be completed by the first quarter of next year.

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