Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Trams And Bicycle Lanes To Ease Congestion

In November 2008, I lamented that Malaysia was nowhere close to being progressive and environmentally friendly like the other countries I've visited or lived in.

I have been to over 40 major cities in my lifetime, so I've done a fair bit of comparing what Malaysia needs but doesn't have - and what the rest of the world has.

Bicycle lanes was top on my list. "Now when do you expect to see that in Malaysia?" I asked in despair.

It turns out the answer was: in 6 years' time.

According to the FMT, the government has already done a great deal in encouraging cycling as a means of transport.

The city recently opened the first dedicated bicycle lane, running for 5.5km from Mid Valley to Dataran Merdeka, at a cost of RM700,000.

More bicycle lanes were being planned, for Jalan Raja Laut, Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman, Bukit Bintang, Central Market, Jalan P. Ramlee and around KLCC.

A bicycle lane was being placed in Jalan Raja Laut, from City Hall to Jalan Ipoh, and later connecting to Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman and Jalan Rahmat, Malaysian Insider reported.

Eventually the new lanes will be connected from Mid Valley to areas in the city centre central areas, for shared use by cyclists and pedestrians.

And trams. For some reason, I keep relating trams to Europe, but the truth is, we used to have trams in Penang a long time ago.

There are the traditional-looking trams, which I have seen in Vienna:

There are also the modern ones, which I saw in Manchester city centre:

According to the mayor:

Between 1.5 million and 2 million vehicles enter the city every day, the report said, placing a tremendous strain on the roads.

“However, a good public transport system must be in place first,” the mayor said.

It's a rare moment when the Malaysian government actually makes sense and applies logic to its thought process. The fact that it thinks is also an anomaly.

But this is good for Kuala Lumpur.

It's far better that the money be spent on necessary amenities, than to fund Rosmah's shopping trips.

No comments: