RM350mil smart tunnel plan for PJ

Lee says the 1.98km tunnel will traverse Sections 51, 51A, Federal Highway Route 2 and New Pantai Expressway. — RAJA FAISAL HISHAN/The Star

AN UNDERGROUND passageway based on the SMART Tunnel concept has been planned under the Draft Special Area Plan (RKK) of Sections 19, 51 and 51A in Petaling Jaya, Selangor.

Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) Planning Development Department director Lee Lih Shyan said the 1.98km tunnel would traverse Sections 51, 51A, Federal Highway Route 2 and New Pantai Expressway (NPE).

“The total cost for the tunnel is estimated at RM350mil and will be funded through the city’s development trust account, with funds collected from developers,” he said during a briefing at MBPJ headquarters.

Lee said the SMART tunnel was seen as an alternative to the cancelled Petaling Jaya Dispersal Link (PJD Link) and was aimed at easing traffic congestion and mitigating floods in the city.

The SMART or Stormwater Management and Road Tunnel is a 9.7km storm drainage and road structure in Kuala Lumpur.

During the briefing, several residents expressed scepticism about the tunnel’s effectiveness in dispersing traffic and suggested cheaper alternatives like a flyover.

“We need to know where the tunnel will start and end. Since the tunnel is to mitigate flooding, we also need to know where the water will be channelled to,” said David Yoong, a retired civil engineer.

“Based on the details we have, the tunnel will not solve the flooding or traffic problems,” he added.

Long-time Section 51 resident Jermain Ryan said she and her neighbours were worried that their properties could be acquired to facilitate construction of the tunnel.

“My row of houses has no walkway and is prone to flooding.

“We are under the LRT line too. I am not convinced this tunnel near my house is viable,” she said.

Lee invited affected residents for another meeting to discuss some of the details with the MBPJ Engineering Department.

Stakeholders may file questions or objections to the RKK by tomorrow using a form downloaded from www.mbpj.gov.my

During the briefing, Lee also said there were plans for transit-oriented development in Taman Dato Harun which included affordable housing.

Overall, he said the gross development value was estimated at RM1.76bil and the development charges (for changes in land use) would be about RM300mil.

These charges would comprise private sector contributions and would go towards the city’s development trust fund, Lee said.

He said it was estimated that council assessment revenue would be RM16mil, based on the projects in the plan.

During the meeting, residents also suggested that a public hospital be built as there were none in the city.

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RKK plan , smart tunnel , MBPJ , Petaling Jaya


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