KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak on Monday (Jul 17) launched the second phase of the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) Sungai Buloh-Kajang Line and announced a 50 per cent discount on all MRT, LRT and monorail rides through Aug 31.
The prime minister said the launch would be the beginning of many more ‘infra-rakyat’ (people’s infrastructure) projects in the country.
These projects included the MRT Sungai Buloh-Serdang-Putrajaya Second Line, Bandar Utama-Johan Setia LRT3, East Coast railway, Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Rail and upgrading of the monorail and Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM) systems.
The second phase of the MRT Sungai Buloh-Kajang Line has 19 stations, seven of which are underground.
Each train has four coaches with a total capacity of 1,200 passengers per journey, and the daily number of passengers are expected to be 400,000.
The trains operate at a frequency of 3.5 minutes during the peak periods.
“All these will be implemented by the government. When the MRT3 or MRT Circle Line is ready, by 2027, we will see a fully-integrated public transportation system in Kuala Lumpur. That’s our dream.
“Based on track record, we (the government) can achieve this objective,” he said at the launch of the MRT Sungai Buloh-Kajang Line second phase at the Tun Razak Exchange underground station in Kuala Lumpur.
Najib said since taking over the leadership of the country, he realised that Kuala Lumpur, as the federal capital, needed an efficient and reliable transportation system network at affordable rates for all the people.
"We have learned from the experience of other capital cities in this region; the traffic congestion is so severe that an individual is forced to spend eight to 10 hours daily on the road.
"Before Kuala Lumpur faces such a predicament, we have to take measures to avert that situation (of traffic congestion) because the signs are already there, especially when it rains,” he said.
The prime minister said a good transportation system network can benefit the people by enabling them to save time and travel costs, enhance productivity and the spirit to work while also reducing the cost of living.
Najib, who is also finance minister, said the MRT Sungai Buloh-Kajang Line was completed earlier than the scheduled end of July and had helped to save RM2 billion (US$466 million) from the initial targeted project cost of RM23 billion.