Tunnel-highways: Public dialogue with Penang CM


A public dialogue with Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng will be held this Sunday. The event is jointly organised by the Penang state government and Penang Forum.

Tentative programme



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  1. Well, to all respected Penang people, as long as we r certain,leaders (v chose) that suggested improvement r due to wanting improvement and not wanting commission or corruption, I think we Penang people should not be worry too much of the negatives rather instead looking forward to improvement with open heart.

  2. We need no more tunnel . Instead, have designated lanes for cyclists…and find ways to ease traffic congestion in Pg.

  3. Anil,

    His face appear on a picture on star metro north, he was wearing a coat without tie on the left of the photo. I forgot the date of the news but it was the first press con by bucg zarul to explain things. I believe is 6 march. His business card shows he’s the marketing director. He drives an e-class wvd68.

    Foo Jee hai also team up with baili group of china to turn Wisma Yeap Chor Yee into a super high class boutique hotel with super high class Japan fine dining. They are also planning to acquire a land (with squatter I think) behind skinnic kelawei to build a super condo for china buyers. The baili group boss is andy tham. His Malaysian wife is staying at gurney 11….

  4. If I’m not wrong, the Tunnel Project was mooted quite some time back and I quite remember a Japanese firm has done a survey on the seabed linking Tg Tokong to Bagan Ajam, hence the Butterworth Outer Ring Road was constructed to cater to this project in future. Just imagine if the some of the traffic can be diverted away from Greenlane/Glugor/Bayan Lepas area, then there won’t be so much of congestion concentrated along this stretch. With the completion of the 2nd Penang Bridge, we can expect heavier traffic along this route, then the public will cry that the State Govt. is not efficient in handling the high volume of traffic.

    Penang is an island soon to be connected by 2 overhead bridges. What happen if the bridge toll charges are raised up (just to punish penang eg) then where is an alternative if the undersea tunnel is not available The ferry cannot cater with the hugh traffic in the future. Beside this 3rd link will play an important role is checking the bridge toll rate You cant cut off all your links esp with these people around Please consider carefully.

  5. By what means “justice” could be pursued in this matter as no full agreement between parties involved? Is it injustice if the final result favour the ‘yes’ side & unfavoured the ‘no’ side? Somehow decision have to be made & it may not please everyone. Is it “justice” to accept posts that please your eyes & reject posts that hurt your eyes? Somehow decision have to be made & the result may not please everyone too.

    I believe justice do exist.

  6. I think many people forget about local condition. We have been burdened with easy ownership of cars. Cars are always preferred to any other transportation as it provides a point to point transportation. So long as its easy to buy cars more people will buy car. Then, our weather is hot. People prefer not to walk under hot sun.

    To change you must change the incentives and disincentives to drive. Make cars more expensive. Make cars usage in town more expensive. Make public transportation more reliable. Impose congestion tax. Other developed cities have done that.

    Can’t see how the tunnel solution can solve this. By allowing more cars with easy access, more people want point to point transportation. With the proposed reduction in car prices wouldn’t there be more rather than less car?

    • Change the Kia Su mentality (against thy neighbor Joneses Chan, Joneses Mutu, Joneses Ali) & the battle to change habits will see the light of day.
      Never mind the hot sun excuses & ease of car financing. This first step collective change is inevitable.

      Multi-prong solution is the way to go:
      Trams for heritage innercity George Town (to go inline with UNESCO heritage status & tourism potential),
      Bus rapid transit for connecting satellite towns served with bus interchanges.
      LRT running along coastal lines & the 2 Pg Bridges for connecting to FTZ & mainland,
      Coastal water ferries serving Balik Pulau/Sg Pinang/Batu Ferringhi/Teluk Bahang transits to George Town & mainland,
      Bicycle rentals in innercity George Town for locals & tourists cycling on dedicated lanes.

      Drink more Kopi-O kau kau to get a clearer picture on this muddled issue.

      And an appeal to the Federal Gomen: Listen, listen, listen to fed up Penangites.

      • I like your kopi o kau suggestion.:) in fact your idea is acceptable. But seriously, if you don’t change disincentive for point to point it will not work. If Singapore does not have congestion tax, more people will drive in cbd town centre including yours truly. London too. Many people forget that economic tool is an effective mechanic in changing behavior. The capex solution is insufficient.

  7. ah.. Wong.. I hope my reference to you in parenthesis is taken correctly..
    (WE, meaning all who attended including myself, had zero rights to represent whole of Penang) as there was practically less than 1% participation from the common folks.. sad but true.. thus the outspoken ones must also consider their views before passionately championing their own as if they are “Penang” !!

  8. According to Borneo Post, Sunway Bhd (Sunway), upon being awarded a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) contract valued at RM452.5 million, has been forecast to reap a seven to eight per cent profit margin from the job and also benefit in terms of improved connectivity to Bandar Sunway.
    The BRT would be 5.4 kilometres long and the contract covered the design, construction, completion and commission of the development, targeted to be completed within 24 months.

    This BRT of 5.4km costing RM452.5million is equal to almost RM84million per km. Compare to the cost of my initiative of RM15million per km, this is another Bolehland’s exorbitant cost infrastructure project design to enrich the developer. My initiative is already costly. The features I provided are rich compared to this elementary BRT system of 5.4km. Malaysia really boleh!

  9. Anil, for those who couldn’t make it,we are still waiting for your report on this meeting.

    The newspaper reports are one sided as usual.

    Is it true that LGE asked the participants , ” are you ready for tunnel” and got a resounding “No”?

      • AGREED SL Wong.. Initially pockets of “NO”.. then more voices of “YES”.. but the press highlights the “NO” part..

        WORSE, there’s highlight on that ONE donkey who kept shouting “Don’t be a Liar” twice.. who also had another who shouted him down !!

        PERSONALLY, it was quite tiring physically to stay focused all through the 3 hours.. BUT I believe the mood of the people (as also rightly pointed out by Wong.. who have zero rights to represent whole of Penang Kia’s).. was that they wanted the Highways.. maybe cautious on the Tunnel.. but surely majority in support of these efforts to alleviate our present predicament.

        It;s still an ongoing process.. as also pointed out.. these are all Proposals.. and the pics shown are Suggested routes for the Highways.. Things can still change PROVIDED the Joe & Jane Publics chip in their views..

        IMHO πŸ™‚

      • Penangites at the dialogue have an ABSOLUTE RIGHT to express Yes or NO.
        Who wins? The Yes or the No? Show me the votes on paper.
        Representing (all Penangites) with a Yes or a No is a non issue.
        Why call for the dialogue in the first place? LGE dares to meet the people, that’s a first step to ‘talk’ & ‘cham seong’ & get a clearer picture from both sides of the discourse.
        Let’s not behave like a boyscout fighting for a frenzied vote (Yes or No) to stay out of Dracula’s night watch! This dialogue won’t change a thing until a more comprehensive introspective approach to this issue. Until then, one can still shout till his throat bursts for his own heroes, Yes or No & rights to cars with obsession & blindness.

        Btw, the Gurney Drive seaside is still muddied & coast-mud-politan. What has been done so far? Happy to mud skippers for a permanent free-cost homes!

        Cheers Kopi-O kau kau.

  10. … Zenith BUCG Sdn Bhd’s chairman is (allegedly) the lieutenant of YB Padang Renggas, LGE’s best of pals!
    Furthermore do you a uniform seller has the capability to be a director in Zenith Construction Sdn Bhd? the uniform seller is Foo Jee Hai of Amity Innovation Sdn Bhd.

  11. BTW Anil.. since you would probably announce this Public Dialogue during your Aliran Forum now.. and perhaps have a BUMPER crowd on Sunday at the Explanade Town Hall.. WILL you be having a pre-registration ??
    Just to make sure enough people have seats ?

  12. Anil, you are wrong. Many would rather drive their car singlely than take a bus.
    Unless car become so very expensive or you need a certificate that cost 60k, only then would they take public transport. Even if there is a jam they will still drive as they have the comfort of the air condition. I have not taken a bus for more than 20 years.

    Good public transport will only solve part of the problem but not all. It must come hand in hand with proper road, highway, bridges and tunnel couple with less vehicle on the road and proper housing and infrastructure. LGE tunnel and highway infrastructure are part of the solutions.
    And the best solutions is less vehicle on the road. But can the country afford that in this globalized world.

  13. OES, if BN is sincere what have the done to resolve this for more than 50 years. No point barking now , move over LGE act with actions. KTC, totally agreed with SLWong, why wait for 20 years when there is a vision that it will come onboard sooner or later. why don’t you question BN for KLIA2 when the current KLIA 1 is under utilized or Langat 2 for that matter? On KKP , don’t act like yourself is like GOGGLE knows everything. Rightfully if one who does not used Public Transport as mode of traveling , one would not experience the real situation. On a lighter note, Penangites have move into “kiasu ” image where one does not like to neighbor next door.

  14. Read about it on Straight Talk Blog which CM’s Press secretary released a statement that said the people who talked a lot (about this tunnel etc. topic) are those who never use public transport. So, by that measure, do we need to prequalify or show our bus tickets or taxi receipts before participating or speaking at Forum?

    Chief Minister please enlighten us, the poor disillusioned people of Penang?

    • Billie.. the statement has a point you know..
      I must confess that it has been decades since I last took a bus in Penang. So it would be utterly hypocritical of me to advocate passionately for Public Transport when I don’t even use it.

      Instead, being a perpetual driver on our Penang Roads daily for like at least 3 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.. That qualifies me to comment on roads (the lack of it) or even ways to improve !! (No need to show toll receipts or fuel purchase slips)

      cheers πŸ™‚

      • I don’t think it is hypocritcal of you, Soon Yew. Nothing wrong in asking for better public transport. A lot of people would rather leave their cars at home than be stuck in traffic jams if there was a decent public transport system they could use.

      • I still love 4WD (LC2 Land Cruiser), but now drive a smaller car to work & drive for leisures leaving damaging carbon footprints.
        But I have to rethink about going anywhere even in a small car when stuck in traffic jams (esp Farlim & Greenlane) daily. Give me a well scheduled public transport system, I will leave my small car at home & save a lot for more heavenly Penang street food to share my gastronomical choices in my digital Penang Street Food Museum.
        One has to change his stubborn mindset of conveniences when faced with a dire situation.

        Some of Ong Eu Soon’s suggestions are worth considering (no political euphemism or overt-euphoria, please).

        Why wait another 5 years (of manic traffic jams) when something could be done proactively with change of mindsets, leadership approach & public transport strategies? (To copycat SL Wong’s colloquy). Too bad for new car salemens & voracious finance companies.

        Anil, keep up your mighty flow of river of right-thinking non-frenzied-partisan justice.

      • SY ,
        I find politicians whichever divide they originally came from and after several years having grooved themselves into office tend to speak to their voters lacking in respect and tainted with stench of arrogance.
        Abit of humility and sensitivity goes a long long way. Convey the same message but keep arrogance and sarcasm under the lid.

      • Billie, you are absolutely right in your assessment of politicians.
        To find a consistently good & caring one is as rare as bumping into a white tiger giving way to you in the Malaysian rainforest.
        Cheers Kopi-O kau kau!.

  15. The true problem is too many cars on the road because of the stupid NAP!
    Every household has at least 2 cars!
    Malaysians do not take public transportation for fear of losing face because only foreign workers take public buses.

      • Selfish ppl: Since I’m powerless to stop those car manufacturers keep producing & buyers of buying and most likely the highway will build in front of my house. Better protest first.

        Non-selfish ppl: Since we need it eventually why not build it now. I don’t care it build on top of my house as long it can benefits the next generations.

      • For the eyes of selfish ppl only:

        1. Why u need to buy a house now & not 20 years later?

        2. Why u want to get marry now & not 20 years later?

        3. Why u want to send your kids to school now & not 20 years later?

        4. Why u want to read KTC’s *Bullshit* books now & not 20 years later?

      • Harun.. you are right about locals not wanting to ride the bus.. though I beg to differ on the reason you proposed.

        For me, it is plain and simple.. It has been decades since I last rode on a bus in Penang.. and all this is because of the long wait (irregular scheduling like what Anil pointed out) + the odd routes that never enter proper residential areas..

      • Yes, I am sure if there is an efficient and reliable system with affordable season tickets, more people will use the buses.

      • Who do not want to save hard-earned money (from using an efficient public transport)?
        Can RapidPenang reduce its season pass for RM75.00 a month to RM50?

        Kia Su, save face is one fleeting thing but at the end of the day, it’s what amount of real cash you have in the bank account that can stretch your survival days that matters. Keeping up with your Joneses Chan / Joneses Mutu / Joneses Ali with a ‘tin-can’ roda showy-investment is a flaw of human nature (ego) not worth the covetous habit to inculcate.
        Cash is still king than the latest flashy Myvi that depreciates the day you ride it out of the happy showroom! And this flashy thing doesn’t grow any cent while you sleep!
        If Rapid bus can be modified to accommodate a bicycle carriage & run on schedule, it will win more hearts & minds to take buses & ride bicycles as dual form of moving about. Also, Penang gomen should plant more shady trees & allocate ‘meaningful/practical’ bicycle lanes for cyclists to ride safely.

        Cheers Kopi-O kau kau (after getting thro’ this mindless madness of a jam in Greenlane & Farlim this rainy + sunshine afternoon (of weather madness).

      • Good suggestions, and yes, rapidpenang season ticket price should be reduced to RM50 (RM30 for senior citizens and students).

  16. The cost of this BRT system is calculated using the BRT infrastruction cost estimation calculator (in excel format) provided by Institute for Transportation and Development Policy. Each costing are derided from real practices. Unlike Lim Guan Eng RM8billion mega project. No one know how he come to the conclusion that it cost RM8billion. All we knew is that after attending the meeting with China primer and signed an MOU, our incredible CM suddenly pop up with this RM8billion with a vow that he rather fail than without trying.
    After his (alleged) insider manipulation, he boldly told us that he saved RM1.7billion to justify his award of the tender to BUCG.
    Anyone who is interested to know the costing of the BRT system can get a soft copy from me personally. Nothing to hide.
    The Bogota municipal spent RM6million to plan for a BRT solution. Lim Guan Eng spent RM3million for nothing since the master plan can’t see the light of the day. I spent only my own sweet time to draft this initiative without costing Penangites not even a penny.

    • WHEW !!!
      Thanks Ong .. for your comprehensive presentation of your BRT Plan .. together with its specs which will turn many prospective project presentations into something worth noticing and giving more thought !!

      So Anil.. another 54 hours for the readers here to place their thoughts !!
      BEST WISHES Eu Soon.. on your BRT Launch at 12pm this Sunday !!

      • Just to clarify – Eu Soon’s initiative (at noon?) is not part of the programme jointly prepared by the Penang state government and Penang Forum, which begins at around 2.00pm.

    • 50 buses on the road.. with 12,000 bicycles on the loose.. I pity the bus driver !! And also the car drivers trying to get to the BST stations πŸ™

  17. This BRT system is complimented by a large public shared bicycle program of 400 stations with 12,000 units of bicycles to serve commuter’s need. It also put emphasis on improving pedestrian walking by allocating a budget of RM35,5million for pedestrian crosswalk, pedestrian bridge and improvements to pedestrian access ways (100km).

    • WAIT !! Ong !!
      There is a FLAW in your proposal !!
      Your model of 12,000 units of bicycles is admirable for the sake of preserving the environment and reducing carbon emission.. AND it is a UTOPIAN model workable in China that has such numbers of bicycles on the road !!

      BUT you forget that many Penangites stay at far-flung places.. or housing estates/condos/apartments which are FAR AWAY from the stations. So are they to drive their cars to any of the 400 stations, park their cars, then cycle ??

      Or are they supposed to walk to the any of the 400 stations.. then ride their bicycles to work/school/leisure.. and swarm Georgetown with 12,000 bicycles !!

      NO LOGIC le .. πŸ™

      • Boo Soon Yew,
        Paris has 16000 public shared bicycles with daily ridership 68,477, world no 2.
        Hangzhou has 61,000-bicycle system, world no 1.
        If this initiative is implemented, Penang will be world no 3.
        You are welcome to attack attack attack. Million thanks in advance! I miss the smart alec who probably forget to take his medicine, never appear any more.

      • peace.. Eu Soon.. πŸ™‚
        but I’ll surely look you up this Sunday !!
        cheers πŸ˜€

      • The highway and tunnel is different from BRT. The BRT is ONLY FOR BUSES and in Malaysia, UMNO Government has a say. The Borneo Post has mentioned in Jan 2010 more than 3 years by Ong Keat Ting, KL is going to have 3 BRT to ease KL clogged problems and help the poor. Another fly kite by BN? Recently, in Kuching Sunway has won the tender to design and built BRT and Sarawak State Government will have buses on them since road transport is under the State unlike in Malaya is all under UMNO Federal Government. Ah Soon Ghor can build BRT, but no buses to run them unless Ah Soon Ghor provide the buses. Penang State has no authority to issues any bus permits. Since RAPID under the Federal Agency, they should show initiative and what is their transport plans too. Where is RAPID’s dialogue and town hall meeting with people of Penang? (Those) blowing whistle and chasing its tail to call Penang car owners to put up the money soley for UMNO Federal RAPID buses to run instead of RAPID should put up its own money for its bus ways.

    • More tunglang less eu soon pls. sakit kepala baca hujah hujah ah soon !

      BTW, tunglang’s favourite Sifu Tan’s Keng Kwee Road Chendol has gone “squeekyclean” overhaul at Prangin Mall ! Formerly one bowl RM2.30 now RM3.80 having moved to a stall nearby (furbished like Kim Garish). OMG last few surviving ori-maestos are forced to follow starrybuckih ultra-cosmopolitan pricing ??????

      • As I had said before, this overt slippery-cleanliness obsession & contagiousness has a downside for ordinary citizens & netizens who can only afford decently priced Ori-Maestro street hawker food + decently brewed Kopi-O kau kau in decent oldie kopitiams.
        Given a chance by fame-default for these Ori-Maestros to ‘upgrade’ like Adobe Creative Suite onto Creative Cloud, the chance of a more expensive makan-makan is not as surprising as a howling dog blinking its eyes on full moon. I have always suspected this inevitability as had happened in overtly-slippery New World Park with its many rounds of Bangla floor wipers making walking dangerous even to geckos with sucker feet!
        More expensive rentals, more detergents, more deodorants, more pails, more towels, more Bangla floor wipers paid (officially) minimum wages, more hifi Kimmy Garish style deco, more Vietnamese/Tiongkok/Vientiane cooks, added govt tax + service charge, & more cosmopolitan excuses to hike up prices!

        Ori-Maestros ‘forced’ to follow starry-eyedbucks’ hifi pricing?
        I believe its more of an excuse to maximize profit but simultaneously hara-kiri themselves in the long run.

        Did Bruce Lee raise his Shaw Brothers’ cinema tickets after achieving fame & fortune? Some sifus here need to re-learn the Tao of Focus + Self Preservation.

        Btw, this morning, I had my favorite Kopi with a seaview served by this forever smiling Mamak @ the sanely clean MPPP foodcourt, Gurney Drive.
        It still smelt unmistakably caffeine heaven @ Rm1.50 for XL (without cosmopolitan’s ++ charges of dizziness).

        Cheers Kopi-O kau kau.

  18. This BRT system has a service route with a total length of 100km. It consists of 4 main transit corridors, i.e. Penang Outer Ring Transit Corridor (40km), Penang Central Transit Corridor (25km), Penang Mainland Transit Corridor(35km) and the existing BEST transit Corridor (20km). A total of 8 large intermediate transfer station for multiple feeder services are allocated to link up all the corridors to complete the loop for a total solution.

  19. If the government drop the RM780 million upgrading project for the three main roads linking Penang second bridge on the island. With the money saved we only need to come out with less than RM800million for this sustainable solution. This budget is something that the MPPP and MPSP can afford to pay especially when it is spread across 5 years term.

    Why wasting our money in the tunes of billions for white elephant projects with dubious economic viability, when we can have an affordable transit solution?
    This solution cost only a fiction of the RM6.8billion mega projects. No concession need to be given. No toll to be paid. No environmental impact. No major financial risk. No wastage of land resources. It is a sustainable solution, the elixir of growth that will make Penang livable and accessible in a sustainable way.

  20. This coming Sunday I will launch my Penang Citizen Alternative Transit Initiative at the same venue at 12pm.
    The cat government after spending some RM3million on the so called master plan, still unable to come out with any public transport solution. What Lim Guan Eng did is to come out with a mega road infrastructure project that move the vehicle not the people. In order to award the tender to his favored firm, BUCG, his administration has resort to post tender negotiation to restructure the participants of the open tender resulting a RM2 shelf company emerge as the winner when the ncompany never involved in the open tender process in the first place. This manipulation which is extremely unfair to the other bidders set a very very bad precedent for corrupted office to use insider manipulation to award tender to favored firm at the cost of the people. We need to stop this mega road infrastructure project which is unsustainable. We also need to stop unscrupulous insider manipulation of post tender negotiation currently practiced by Lim Guan Eng administration.

    The following is the specification of the BRT which is estimated to cost RM1.5billion. This BRT will be comprehesive enough to cater for the whole Penang structure. It’s main components are BRT, public shared bicycle program, pedestrian friendly walkways, feeder bus and taxi. This is a sustainable solution is drafted based on the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy’s best practices and cost estimation calculator.

    Specification for BRT
    Length of BRT Service Route: 100km per direction
    Length of Feeder Service Route: 150km per direction
    Number of BRT Station with security camera and emergency call: 100stations at 2km interval
    Number of air conditioned BRT buses: 40units at operate 5km interval
    Number of air conditioned Feeder buses: 50units operate at 5km interval
    Terminal Facilities: 4
    Depot Facilities: 5
    Restroom at Terminal: 80
    Taxi Stand at station: 100
    Bicycle Parking at Station: 100
    Pedestrian crosswalk with signal: 100
    Pedestrian bridge at station: 100
    Improvements to pedestrian access ways: 100km
    Kiss-and-ride facilities only (Drop-off point no parking): 5 units
    Park-and-ride facility (open lot parking): 5 units
    Park-and-ride facility (multi-level parking): 2 units
    Standard intermediate transfer station: 10 unit
    Large intermediate transfer station for multiple feeder services: 8 units
    Control centre (including software): 1 unit
    Public shared bicycle program: 400 stations with 12,000 bikes with half of the stations and bikes at BRT stations
    Penang Outer Ring Transit Corridor : 40km
    Penang Central Transit Corridors: 25km
    Penang Main Land Transit Corridor: 35km
    BEST Corridor: 20km
    Total cost USD$500million RM1.5 billion
    Total cost per km USD$5million RM15 million

  21. Unlike Pakatan, the cheap PM or BN UMNO they have never come out to answer allegation and covered deals and projects. PR LGE has given you a dialogue for discussion . It shows that he is transparent and sincere to disclose whatever the people need to know. But to some trouble makers here they keep on ranting trouble when they have the opportunities to rant it out at PR and LGE at the forum. Why ask someone else to go and tell LGE when you can go to the dialogue yourself and lash out at LGE. Is it not a waste of time when you keep spewing nonsense, lies and deceit and keep on saying wasting of time. This show that these BN UMNO Gerakan poster have no issues at all and they are here not for a sincere debate but just to cause trouble. Just like the BN UMNO thugs and mobsters that cause trouble at PR ceramah

  22. See ALL of you with Penang’s interest at heart !!!
    This SUNDAY, Chinese Town Hall, 2pm !!
    Together, we the Rakyat will move mountains !!!

  23. First of all I laud the organiser for their effort and the state govt for their willingness to participate in the dialogue. I don’t know what constraints the organisers and participants are under but I must say that 1 hour and 20 mins of Q & A time from the floor is hardly enough for a project this big, more so when you have ppl like Chow Kon Yeow who is likely to read a long irrelevant essay to the floor as a reply. I am sure there will be many Penangites, particularly those directly affected by these projects who will intend to ask loads of questions. Perhaps a whole day should be planned leaving at least 3 to 4 hours of question time.

  24. Someone had better ask this misfit chief minister Tokong LGE,whether the tunnel project will hamper the proposed dredging of the channel to 18.5m which is an important project to revitalise Penang Port ,otherwise he will skip this issue and blame BN again.

  25. Hi everyone,

    Let us attend this public dialogue with an open mind!

    Hopefully, many interested Penangites would attend to contribute and reflect on ideas presented or even share the ideas they have to contribute to a more meaningful dialogue!

    I should be back in Pg by Saturday and hence looking forward to attending this dialogue where I hope many professionals in the relevant fields would come forward and contribute! See you there then.


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