GEORGE TOWN: The hill road linking Mount Erskine to Vale of Tempe Road in Tanjung Bungah, Penang, is now open to traffic after being closed for three months.
The Public Works Department (JKR) completed the repair works yesterday, four days ahead of the one-week ultimatum issued by Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng.
Lim had vented his frustration at the slow progress after a site visit on Tuesday.
With the completion of the repair works costing RM435,000 yesterday, Lim thanked JKR for finishing the task ahead of schedule.
“This road is an important link for those staying in Tanjung Bungah to travel to the town area.
“With Chinese New Year approaching, we expect the traffic volume to increase.
“This road serves as an alternative to Jalan Tanjung Bungah,” he told newsmen after the road opening ceremony yesterday.
Heavy rainfall and the movement of earth underneath the road compounded by heavy vehicles led to the collapse of the 75m stretch on Oct 13 last year.
The authorities had to close the entire 3km stretch of the hill road for safety reason then.
During the road closure, heavy traffic was reported in Jalan Tanjung Bungah during peak hours as the road serves as the only option for residents in Lembah Permai Road, Taman Concord and its vicinity.
Lim also said heavy vehicles of certain tonnage would be barred from using the road to prevent a recurrence of the problem.
Also present at the road opening were state exco members Lim Hock Seng and Jagdeep Singh Deo, and Bukit Bendera MP Zairil Khir Johari.
Meanwhile, Tanjung Bungah resident G.L. Goh, 52, expressed relief after learning that the road was reopened to traffic yesterday.
“Many of us who stay near the hill road do not have to take a longer detour to get to town.
“The reopening of this hill road will certainly alleviate traffic congestion in Jalan Tanjung Bungah during peak hours.
“The timing is just right as the festive season is just around the corner,” she said.