Risking it en route to MRT station

Commuters walking along the narrow and busy Jalan Johar from the Pusat Bandar Damansara MRT station. ― CHAN TAK KONG/The Star

DESPITE the introduction of a shuttle service, commuters are dicing with danger to cross the traffic-riddled Jalan Johar and Jalan Maarof to get to the Pusat Bandar Damansara MRT station.

A pedestrian bridge, located near a petrol station in Jalan Johar, has been closed to facilitate a construction project in the area.

Following public complaints, Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) introduced, on March 10, a shuttle service from DC Mall in Jalan Damanlela to the station.

Medan Damansara Residents Association president Peter Raiappan said DBKL held a meeting last month to discuss the issue.

“It was attended by Kuala Lumpur mayor Datuk Seri Mahadi Che Ngah and Segambut MP Hannah Yeoh to find a solution to the problem.

“Both were concerned over pedestrians’ safety and the shuttle service was proposed as a temporary measure,” said Peter.

However, not all commuters are keen on using the shuttle service.

A Medan Damansara resident, who only gave her name as Chelsea, said the shuttle vans arrived every 10 minutes.

“It also stops regularly to pick up passengers, which adds to my commute time. I can save time by walking,” she said.

A Bukit Damansara resident, who wished to be known only as Jason, said the pedestrian bridge was closed two years ago.

“Back then, commuters could walk across the construction site to get to the MRT but this route has been unavailable since last year,” said Jason who takes the MRT every day.

With no proper access way, MRT users have to walk along Jalan Johar and Jalan Maarof to get to the station.

On weekdays, people are seen walking in a single file along the narrow roads to and from the station.

It is dangerous as the elevated Sprint Highway runs overhead in some areas, reducing visibility and increasing the risk of accidents.

During a visit, StarMetro witnessed a near-miss involving a pedestrian and a car in Jalan Maarof.

Medan Damansara resident Cecelia Chung, 71, said the lack of a pedestrian access was a hassle for senior citizens.

“We often have to wait up to 15 minutes for the road to be free of traffic before crossing,” she said, adding that the danger doubled when it rained.

The shuttle service runs from Monday to Saturday, from 7.30am to 10.30am and 4.30pm to 7.30pm, DBKL announced in a post on its Facebook page.

“This is temporary until a pedestrian walkway is built by the project contractor by the end of March,” it added.

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