The East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) project will be unveiling its proposed realignment from Kota Baru to Dungun during its Public Inspection exercise on November 25, 2019, according to Malaysia Rail Link Sdn Bhd (MRL) in a statement yesterday.
It said the public would be able to give feedback and suggestions during the three-month ECRL Public Inspection for the Kota Baru-Dungun stretch (also known as Section A), comprising a 210.4km mainline, a proposed future spurline 14.4 km, and six-passenger/ freight stations.
The ECRL realignment for Section A had proposed two stations for Kelantan namely Kota Baru and Pasir Puteh, while Terengganu will have four stations located at Jerteh, Bandar Permaisuri, Kuala Terengganu, and Dungun.
The 14.4 km proposed future spurline is expected to link the ECRL mainline in Kelantan with the port of Tok Bali.
The proposed 210.4 km Kota Baru-Dungun stretch or Section A mainline will consist of 43.9 km rail alignment in Kelantan and the remaining 166.5 km alignment in Terengganu.
MRL chief executive officer Datuk Seri Darwis Abdul Razak said the proposed realignment for Section A was in line with the comprehensive value engineering exercise that resulted in cost savings for the improved ECRL project.
MRL according to Darwis, had received conditional approval for its ECRL Railway Scheme for Section A from Agensi Pengangkutan Awam Darat (APAD) on November 4, 2019, paving the way for the Public Inspection exercise to ensure the project’s rail alignment meet the interests and expectations of the local populace.
The Public Inspection information booth for Section A will be operating on weekdays at APAD headquarters in Kuala Lumpur from November 25, 2019, until February 24, 2020.
“We have also initiated the environment impact assessment, social impact assessment, and heritage impact assessment for Section A to the authorities as these reports are prerequisites for APAD granting final approval to our Railway Scheme.
“The public may also visit MRL’s website or access the ECRL project’s social media platform for the latest information and details of the Public Inspection exercise,” he said.
On ECRL’s progress, Darwis said the project’s overall completion rate currently stood at 12.86 per cent as compared to 10.18 per cent in June 2019.
He noted that construction works involving tunnels and viaducts along the 223-km Dungun-Mentakab stretch (also known as Section B) was progressing according to plan.
“Site clearing and earthworks are actively taking place on multiple sites along Section B where there are no alignment changes to our Railway Scheme following the resumption of the improved ECRL project back in April 2019,” he added.
The ECRL, scheduled for completion by December 2026, would have 640 km rail network linking Kota Baru to Port Klang.
The RM44 billion rail project is expected to cut travel time between Kota Baru and Putrajaya in just four hours. — Bernama