Penang Hill, being a popular tourist attraction, never failed to bring in the crowd, especially during the year end school holidays. Tourists and locals made a beeline to the Penang Hill train station, patiently queuing to purchase train tickets to ride up Penang Hill.
Just next to the Penang Hill ticketing station, is another “attraction”, the multi storey car park, the “Kancil Car Park”. The car park costing 4.3 million ringgit to build, is part of the Tourism Ministry upgrading of Penang Hill funicular train project , which is funded by the Federal Govt.
Although the multi storey car park was completed in May, it failed to get the certificate of fitness, due to its poor design. The state Govt, came under heavy criticism, over this car park project, which was implemented by Penang Development Corpor
ation (PDC) Incidentally, the Chief Minister of Penang is also the chairman of PDC.
The multi-storey building, was designed with 120 parking lots on three levels and the ground floor is for buses. The narrow ramps for cars going up and down the slopes are at almost 35 to 40 degrees steep.
With its short turning radius, the car park is only suitable for Kancil cars. The diagonally drawn parking bays make the car park even narrower. The top most parking floor’s ceiling is less than 2m-high.
In November, a 3 member inquiry committee found, that the project’s architect and consultant was responsible for the poor design of the car park. He has since, been dismissed by his employer.
This controversial “Kancil” car park, at the foot of Penang Hill have been earmarked to be demolished. A new building will be constructed in its place. The existing 112 parking bays will be increased to 300 parking lots.
The new multi storey car park, will take about 15 months to complete and it will cost 5.5 to 6.75 million ringgit to build.
Video by Lim Boo Seng, Citizen Journalist