Research consultant sought for Penang’s LRT project

GEORGE TOWN: The call for tender to appoint a research consultant for the Light Rail Transit (LRT) project has been made by the project manager, says state infrastructure, transport and digital development committee chairman Zairil Khir Johari.

“The project manager, Mass Rapid Transit Corporation Sdn Bhd (MRT Corp), called for tender to appoint a consultant to conduct research on the project.

“The project is at the research stage which is expected to be completed early next year,” he told Gooi Hsiao-Leung (PH -Bukit Tengah) at the state assembly yesterday.

Gooi asked if the state government was certain that the LRT project would kick off after it was put on hold.

Zairil said the LRT, linking Penang island and Butterworth, will become a reality.

“Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim announced that the Federal Government will fund the project.

“Our confidence comes from the fact that he himself came to Penang back in May to announce that the Federal Government would fund the project.

“This was followed by a working visit by Transport Minister Anthony Loke.

“The state government has also held meetings with MRT Corp to discuss the project.

“We are 100% confident that this project is on track to be built as planned,” he added.

Zairil said the state had conducted various technical, feasibility and alignment studies on the LRT project.

“The studies have been handed over to MRT Corp. We hope the project will begin in the near future,” he said.

Zairil said the costs, implementation and start date of the project will be decided by the Transport Ministry.

“We are waiting for the ministry to finalise several details.

“Details of the cost and implementation method as well as the start date of the project depends on the decision of the ministry.

“A holistic transport system is capable of generating economic growth and improving the standard of living of the people of Penang.

“The state government remains committed to empowering public transport through the implementation of the Penang Transport Master Plan,” he said.

In May, Anwar announced that the Federal Government would set aside an allocation for Penang to have its first LRT.

In his Budget 2024 speech, the Prime Minister announced that the LRT system connecting the island and the mainland costing RM10bil, will be constructed under a private-public partnership model.

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