KUALA LUMPUR: The government is finalising the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) project, which saw changes made by the previous administration on its original alignment, the Dewan Rakyat was told today.
Transport Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong said the alignment was divided into three – Kota Baru to Dungun (Section A), Dungun to Mentakab (Section B) and Mentakab to Port Klang (Section C).
"For Section C, we are in the midst of finalising the alignment and stations. The government is looking into several factors like project viability, rail connectivity and financial implications before approval can be given," he said in reply to a question by Datuk Jalaluddin Alias (BN-Jelebu).
He said the National Physical Planning Council meeting attended by several menteris besar (MBs) on June 11 had discussed the alignment.
He said it was decided that the matter would be referred to the Transport Ministry and chief secretary to the government before a decision was made.
"The ministry had on two counts discussed this with the state governments. This week we will meet the Selangor government once again to look at our options that would benefit the people of Selangor and their concerns, including the (Klang Gates) quartz ridge in Gombak and Batu dam," he said.
He said environmental and social impact assessments on the project needed to be conducted, pointing out four Orang Asli villages that would be affected by latest plans, compared to one in the original alignment.
Wee said the rail services would consist of 30 per cent passengers and the remaining 70 per cent to be used for cargo services.
The overall project costs was reduced by PH from RM65.5 billion to RM44 billion after realigning its railway track to avoid the 18km tunnelling through the Titiwangsa mountain, thus reducing the stations from 24 to 20.
Sumber: New Straits Times