‘Cross-border link to greatly benefit state’

Mohd Zarif says the RTS will provide seamless travel between Johor and Singapore.

THE Johor Baru-Singapore Rapid Transit System (RTS) Link will be a catalyst for more economic growth for Johor, especially within the Iskandar Malaysia region.

Mass Rapid Transit Corp Sdn Bhd (MRT Corp) chief executive officer Datuk Mohd Zarif Hashim said construction for the RTS project was on schedule and progress was already more than 20%.

“The RTS, a mega project by both Malaysia and Singapore, will link Bukit Chagar in Johor Baru and Woodlands in the island republic and be operational on Jan 1, 2027,” he said during a seminar on RTS and its impact on the Johor property market at University of Reading Malaysia in Iskandar Puteri, Johor.

He said construction would also include an elevated depot at Wadi Hana in Johor Baru, making it the only depot for RTS.

Mohd Zarif said the depot would serve as a service and maintenance centre for RTS trains and coaches.

He further said the four-storey RTS station in Bukit Chagar would house customs and immigration clearance for the RTS.

“The link will provide a seamless travel journey where they will have to clear customs and immigration checkpoints only once.

“The track itself is elevated at 25m high on the Johor Baru side.

“Once it crosses the Johor Straits and enters Singapore, the train will go 20m underground to reach the Woodlands station,” he said.

Mohd Zarif said the RTS could take in up to 10,000 passengers.

He said the link would result in an economic spillover for Johor by providing more support systems and bringing in more talent.

“RTS will encourage more foreign direct investments in Johor Baru and Iskandar Malaysia.

“People will not be stuck in a long traffic jam on the Causeway as RTS travel time is about 15 minutes, including customs and immigration clearance,” he added.

At present, Mohd Zarif said some 1,500 local workforce were part of the project, which once completed, it would generate 30,000 employment opportunities in various sectors.

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