RM1.23bil commuter train for Johor Bahru by 2013


A RM1.23 billion intra-city modern commuter train project has been approved by the state government here recently.

The project was awarded to Metropolitan Commuter Network, a joint venture between KUB Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. and Malaysia Steel Works (KL) Bhd.

The project involves the building of seven transit station buildings and sixteen transit points that connects to the major routes in Iskandar Malaysia.

The 100 kilometres commuter rail network not only serves the Johor Bahru Sentral -Woodland, Singapore route but also along the major development areas like Johor Premium Outlet, Legoland Malaysia, Educity, Hi-Tech Park, Senai and Lake Hill Resort city amongst others.

It is projected to commute some 30 million passengers per year when in full operation by 2013.

The Johor mentri besar, Abdul Ghani Othman made the announcement here recently.

He said that the project is in line with the target set under the NKRA and the economic transformation programme which is also part of the Iskandar Malaysia transportation action plan.

The state welcomes various form of investments which benefits the community and the local businesses, said Ghani.

Meanwhile, the CEO of Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA), Ismail Ibrahim stressed that IRDA is committed in ensuring that the intra-city commuter service is efficiently run at its optimum where adequate feeder bus services will be deployed to support the commuter train operations.

He added that the intra-city modern commuter train project will not only helps to minimise traffic congestion in the city area but will also reduces greenhouse effect.

Meanwhile, the chairman of Metropolitan Commuter Network Sdn. Bhd., Abdul Halim Abdul Samad said that the company is expected to launch the intra-city train service by next year and expected to be in full operations by 2013.

He said that the commuter train is of world standard and that this project is expected to generate a national gross incomes of RM1.63 billion for the next 25 years.

Johor Bahru is the second major tourists destination in the country and the visitors figures is expected to hit 19 million by end of this year.

The national tourism industry projected that the country national gross income is expected to increase to RM104 biliion by year 2020 from the current RM67 billion.

The commuter rail transit building infrastructures will be borne by the company whereas the rest of the project will be financed under a private-public partnership scheme.