97% public support for Penang LRT? Oh, puh-lease!

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The Penang government claims that 97% of close to 3,000 respondents have indicated support for the proposed elevated light rail system going by the responses to a questionnaire at several booths around the state including at the Penang airport. Seriously?

Have you seen the questionnaire? It has three laughably ludicrous and leading questions.

Question 1: Do you support the PTMP as a means of reducing traffic congestion in Penang Island?

My comments: Of course, everyone would support a Penang transport masterplan if they are told it would reduce congestion.

But most people would not know which Penang transport masterplan this question is referring to or what it entails.

  • Does PTMP refer to the cheaper Halcrow plan, which put forward bus rapid transit and modern trams, which would be largely elevated or segregated from traffic except in the heritage area?
  • Or the bloated RM50bn SRS plan, which came up with expensive options that would require massive land reclamation to finance it, jeopardising our fisheries while putting state finances in a precarious position?

What about mainland Penang? Forgotten under phase 1? Who cares about the mainland for the next I-don’t-know-how-many years, right?

Question 2: The priority public transport to be built under PTMP is the Bayan Lepas LRT. Will you be using it upon completion?

This doesn’t tell respondents where the LRT is going to from Bayan Lepas. So how are they to know if they will be using it?

I told a relative in her eighties that this single elevated light rail line is supposed to be from Penang Airport to Komtar.

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Her immediate response: “Why Komtar?”

I think she has more sense than all the bloated PTMP planners put together!

This second question does not even mention that the cost of the LRT has been rising to a staggering “more than RM10bn” now. Now, RM10bn would have been enough to put in decent public transport across the entire state including mainland Penang (under the Halcrow plan).

This question also does not mention other more affordable alternatives – an efficient bus system, modern trams and automous rail rapid transit.

The question fails to mention the SRS plan for a RM9bn Pan Island Link from the north to the south of the island. Wouldn’t many respondents prefer to drive along this new extravagant highway (for the few years before it gets congested) instead of taking the Komtar-to-Bayan Lepas elevated light rail route?

No mention in this question about the bloated projected LRT ridership figure (42 million per year in an island with just over 700,000 residents) put up under the SRS plan, which critics have panned. What happens if the ridership is not met? How will the Penang state government cough up the money if ticket sales are unable to cover operational costs and maintenance? Where is it going to get the money from? From the public?

Without all this information, how are respondents to provide informed answers? Would they still support the elevated light rail if they knew all this?

So basically, those who framed this question are preying on public ignorance of these all-important details.

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Question 3 – Do you support/agree that Penangites should look at public transport as a greener and cheaper way of getting around?

What kind of stupidly obvious question is this? This question is trying to hoodwink Penangites into thinking that the transport modes put forward under the extravagant PTMP are the only public transport modes around.

But the reality is that there are other more affordable and efficient options that can be built more quickly at a fraction of the cost.

I think this question aims to put into the respondents’ minds that the bloated PTMP is a greener and cheaper way of getting around – when it is not.

My advice to Penangites: Don’t waste your time with this farcical “questionnaire” that is not worth the paper it is printed on.

It reminds me of all those top-down largely one-way “consultation sessions” and “public briefings” on the “PTMP”. At those sessions, ordinary people were by and large not provided with real alternatives to the bloated RM50bn SRS transport proposal, which entails massive ecologically damaging land reclamation to finance it.

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SpaceMarine
SpaceMarine
31 Aug 2019 11.28am

In my opinion the whole Komtar building and its enclave (minus the heritage buildings and site) should be demolished and redevelop into a more practical commercial and administrative zone. This will also put to sleep the Bus Terminal that for years has been dark and reeking of “third world”. DAPCAT should follow the lead of Singapore who are non hesitant to tear down old and “eyesore” landmarks!

Shriek
31 Aug 2019 4.49pm
Reply to  SpaceMarine

Of course you don’t take bus. So the bus station is sleepy. You don’t eat curries and you don’t bother to go there. Proves true. People still prefers modern shopping mall. Komtar is not shopping mall but shops which are frequent by foreign workers

Ernest Lau
Ernest Lau
1 Sep 2019 11.35am
Reply to  SpaceMarine

Komtar is an old legacy from Gerakan that has long served its usefulness. No longer relevant as a shopping mall today given its old fashion layout.

Komtar building could be turned into a world’s tallest Bed and Breakfast with partnership with airBnB.

Or it could be converted into a foreign workers dorminatory since it has a ready bus terminal for bus kilang.

Modern Penang must move away from the dated image of Komtar. It has no historical value.

Proarte
Proarte
1 Sep 2019 1.45pm
Reply to  SpaceMarine

To begin with, why call it Komtar?

I do not remember any contributions from Tun Razak for Penang. So why name that erection after him?

Probably explain why the building has poor feng shui.

Shriek
1 Sep 2019 9.46pm
Reply to  Proarte

Tun asked his sinkapore relative who is a architect to design it. The design follows some of the old Singapore shopping malls along beach road. Worst komtar shops have very low Headroom’s.

Soler
Soler
1 Sep 2019 2.13pm
Reply to  SpaceMarine

Komtar Johor Bahru was torn down a decade ago and the new JBCC (Johor’s equivalent of KLCC) is now standing on its site.

Komtar Penang may be a nolstagic place for older folks until they see the present conditions. It has no place for the young generation. No business can survive there despite so much rejuvenation effort.

Wei
Wei
2 Sep 2019 1.12am
Reply to  SpaceMarine

Gelakan should be made to buy up the whole building and make it their losers’ club house to remind themselves of (what) they left behind…Tea Susu can go there sip tea susu,pay mahjong and kpkb all day long…

Jordan
Jordan
2 Sep 2019 10.27am
Reply to  Wei

Gerakan can turn Komtar into world’s tallest university – Wawasan University, complete with hostels and convocation hall.

Lim Goh Poh
Lim Goh Poh
31 Aug 2019 8.13am

Clueless cat caan evolve into sly cunning fox per ecology and biological cycles of survival of fittest..

Jordan
Jordan
1 Sep 2019 6.10pm

No need fancy LRT or tram.

Mini buses will do for a small island llike Penang.

‘Mini’ bus service kicks off on route T300 in Kuala Lumpur
https://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2019/09/01/039mini039-bus-service-kicks-off-on-route-t300-in-kuala-lumpur

Lim Goh Poh
Lim Goh Poh
1 Sep 2019 8.11pm

Bus system is most economical option to save taxpayer money for PTMP as the the rakyat are thectru project delivery partners.
I hope USM business faculty can offer classes for RapidPenang management to effective run the bus system. Also learn from RapidKL to use mini buses for free shuttle or route along narrow lanes.

https://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/nation/2019/09/01/shorter-buses-begin-operations-in-kl-today/

Bhaskar
Bhaskar
1 Sep 2019 12.38pm

Better for current Penang Government to squeeze money from Putrajaya for whatever public transportation project be it Tram or LRT in order to be fair yo Penang taxpayers.

After GE15, Umno-PAS will likely be in power and Penang can say goodbye from whatsoever funding from federal government.

This is my humble opinion as PH will unlikely win GE15 because majority voters are malays and they are swayed by the R&R rhetorics and deceived by Umno that malays are losing their power.

Lim Goh Poh
Lim Goh Poh
31 Aug 2019 3.25pm

Happy Merdeka day but sad to read such revealing predictions in link below hopefully there is u turn for all to live in harmony as nation progresses beyond colours.
http://mysinchew.sinchew.com.my/node/122156

Yolo
Yolo
1 Sep 2019 12.16pm
Reply to  Lim Goh Poh

It is more depressing to receive WhatsApp video of Wee Ka Siong singing a capella version of SETIA. MO1 must be very disappointed that he did not sing the 1Malaysia song.

Proarte
Proarte
1 Sep 2019 1.59pm
Reply to  Lim Goh Poh

The next PH betrayal of ‘New Malaysia’ is the current MB of Selangor Amirrudin ( allied to the Azmin camp of PKR ) attempting to table an amendment of the state constitution to allow for unilateral conversion of non-Muslim children by a newly converted Muslim parent without the requirement for the non-Muslim paren to give consent. Clearly, any decent human being would acknowledge the injustice of denying a non-Muslim their parental rights but such is the … immorality of the … powers that be.

tunglang
tunglang
31 Aug 2019 7.31am

Hookwinking the public is a Karmic sin. PgDAPCAT, you will bear the consequences.
No he-he-he matter.
Anil is not shrieking off his head but reminds Penangites to be more informed (when) dealing with tricky + arrogant PgDAPCAT’s state development. I have met with some people who said the next GE will be the death knell for PgDAPCAT. DAP is not a selling brand (of Harapan) anymore like it was pre-308 Euphoria – in fact it is an UBAHed (for worse) DAP after GE14.

Shriek
2 Sep 2019 11.28am
Reply to  tunglang

Susu teh, you can clearly see the brain doing its computation. Again the brain is set to Kbkb and troll mode. Amazon fire not only destroy vegetation but also animal life. Animal will gone forever.

Milk Tea
Milk Tea
31 Aug 2019 1.14pm

True, stupid questionnaire questions… Public transport will only further congest the roads… We already have rapids and hop-on and hop-offs buses. No one is going to seat the public transport if it is not well maintained, we know it won’t be.
Use the funds to improve the roads, not creating more unforeseen problems.

Milk Tea
Milk Tea
31 Aug 2019 1.19pm
Reply to  Milk Tea

Don’t forget there is the new Go-jek and Dego-ride thing…Pg Gomen wasting resources as always, and please reclaimed more island, Good Job!

Shriek
31 Aug 2019 4.24pm
Reply to  Milk Tea

Susu not susah taking go-jek? All in family from toddle to grandpa all taking go-jek. Tulang has to becareful as go-jek will bump into his 4wd.

Milk Tea
Milk Tea
1 Sep 2019 1.48am
Reply to  Shriek

Tulang got more brains that you, that’s for sure. As your boss Lim Kit Siang says, might be time to close shop. You and your Malaysian Malaysia DAP can say goodbye…

Shriek
1 Sep 2019 9.58pm
Reply to  Milk Tea

Tulang has more brain that kau beh kau bu. Brain that complains. Always whinging like primary students. Take a bus, complaints n the bus takes more than 1/2 hr to arrive. Talk about green but don’t act green

tunglang
tunglang
2 Sep 2019 2.06pm

Developers’ cosy ties with politics may explain Hong Kong’s biggest woe: widening income gap in the least affordable city on earth https://www.scmp.com/business/article/3025260/developers-cosy-ties-politics-may-explain-hong-kongs-biggest-woe-widening Excerpt: A consequence of the growing influence of billionaires is the widening income gap in Hong Kong and a further concentration of wealth in the hands of the few, said Lau. The fortunes of Hong Kong’s 75 wealthiest billionaires – estimated at US$224 billion in 2013 – made up nearly 82 per cent of the city’s gross domestic product, according to Wealth-X’s Billionaire Census. By last year, the tycoon class had ballooned to 93 with US$315 billion in… Read more »

tunglang
tunglang
2 Sep 2019 1.07pm

Call for end to tunnel project https://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2019/09/02/call-for-end-to-tunnel-project GEORGE TOWN: Residents at Mount Erskine, upset that their homes would be affected by the proposed RM30mil underground tunnel project from the middle of Mount Erskine Road to Adventist Hospital in Burmah Road, are calling for it to be scrapped. Shirleen Bryne, whose family home is situated along Mount Erskine Road, said residents were shocked when they received a letter from the land office in May, which was when they first heard about the project. They were further taken aback to learn that the project had been gazetted in 2017, she added. “From… Read more »

Simon tan
Simon tan
30 Aug 2019 10.27pm

Take the results with a pinch of salt? Questions are like spoonful of salt. How to answer NO. Shameful to Dead CAT.

Wei
Wei
31 Aug 2019 3.58pm
Reply to  Simon tan

can’t take the reality on the ground? …come and stand for election with your “green with zero development agenda” …see you get elected or not……you may want to get some advise from Mr Teh (what’s the name again..?)the loser…hehe

Shriek
31 Aug 2019 4.58pm
Reply to  Simon tan

Is a tank pointing its turret at your head? You can disagree like we disagree here. Shameful. over there you said yes and here you said no.

Rosie
Rosie
31 Aug 2019 7.32am

Great article Anil.

Bravo, this is world class spin, worthy of Peter Mandelson, the so-called Machiavellian Prince of Darkness, right hand to Tony Blair.

Penang developer PR boleh!

Jordan
Jordan
31 Aug 2019 7.22am

SETIA

Selamat menyambut Hari Kebangsaan.

tunglang
tunglang
31 Aug 2019 4.47pm
Reply to  Jordan

Looks like, sounds like & feels like Lim Kok Wing style of AV publicity promotion for Mahathir era of the late 80s – 90s.
Should be better with fast pace & more oomph lah!
Don’t make Malaysia Baru reminiscent of BN ala Mahathir’s!

Ernest Lau
Ernest Lau
1 Sep 2019 11.37am
Reply to  tunglang

Lim Kok Wing is no longer in the good books of Tun M(?) LKW is kaki bodek for 1Malaysia Najib MO1.

I always wonder Setia for what?

It should be politicians setia to rakyat that voted for them, not the other way round, right?

glissantia
glissantia
2 Sep 2019 12.31pm
Reply to  Ernest Lau

It was Mahathir who invented “setia”; every civil servant had to waear a badge showing this mantra. LKW now takes out ads 2 or 3 times a year praising himself, instead of once.

tunglang
tunglang
2 Sep 2019 8.02pm
Reply to  Ernest Lau

Lim Kok Wing was Mahathir’s Advertising & PR Guru during the late 80s till early 2000s. His signature execution of many AVs (audio visuals) for BN campaigns looked, sounded & felt the same! The same went for print ads with heavy bold condensed sanserif type fonts (Futura?) for headlines, big pictures & followed by regular condensed sanserif typo for body texts. Whether it’s for Pangkor Island Resort, Merc, Mazda, TNB or Tourism Malaysia, they all looked the same, felt the same of LKW style of ad making! Art Directors, Creative Directors, Copywriters of WingsBBDO (now defunct) were either Yes-Sir-Zombie-Men or… Read more »

Proarte
Proarte
1 Sep 2019 1.50pm
Reply to  Jordan

These politicians should focus on improving the economy. We do not want them to waste time as entertainers.

tunglang
tunglang
1 Sep 2019 11.49pm
Reply to  Jordan

After 62 yrs of socio-political-economic-cultural-education experiments decided on dilemmas, we are still going back to Square One of Squabbling Dilemmas! BUT didn’t Merdeka afford us to grab the golden opportunity costs to better things???

Time & Tides wait for no men. So is the globalised world of constant changes indifferent to a country fumbling in perennial dilemmas. Even Pontianak in Kalimantan will surge ahead of us shrieking with pride while we wail of past failures & unproductive+divisive R&R fault lines!

Shriek
2 Sep 2019 11.32am
Reply to  tunglang

Tulang now talk about development. New buildings in ponti anak. Why no mention of those your friend the orang in the hutan? Many moons you have not been back to Belum valley

glissantia
glissantia
2 Sep 2019 12.36pm
Reply to  tunglang

Labour Minister said automation will elimiate over half the jobs. So, what is the solution? More capitalism, development, plunder and propaganda? Kill off peeople faster with more pollution? Seek work overseas (e.g. in Turkey) as labourers and housemaids?

Tajudin Raj
Tajudin Raj
6 Sep 2019 2.52pm
Reply to  tunglang

Last night Malaysia beat Indonesia in world cup football, it is the old Malaysia that we once knew and mind it it’s Malaysia that embrace unity during the time we cheer Mokhtar Dahari, Soh Chin Aun, Arumugam, Santok Singh, Shukor Salleh and many more hero’s of Malaysia. The Malaysia that we live in now is damaged by the previous government indoctrination and mind slavery. First it was race that was used to sow mistrust and disunity among Malaysian and now religion is being used to further the failed race card game. The first victim was race and now its religion.

Saravanan
Saravanan
8 Sep 2019 11.30am
Reply to  Tajudin Raj

I don’t support local professional footballers and the national team because they are paid so well but deliver poor results!

Ken Fong
Ken Fong
30 Aug 2019 9.31pm

Stupid moron CM said the LRT will help to revive Komtar area … What? You are spending 8 billion to help reviving Komtar???? You stupid Moron CM!

Lim Goh Poh
Lim Goh Poh
31 Aug 2019 11.49am
Reply to  Ken Fong

Komtar Walk is an awful sight now with abandoned shoplots there, even KFC and Dim Sum closed as no human traffic there being so isolated despite revamped octopus overhead pedestrian walkways (some say its Gerakan feng shui flop surprisingly sustained by the CAT).
Komtar The Top too expensive for most locals, and nothing special to attract tourists just like the … MMall at Penang Times Square. Try to copy Bangkok Terminal 21 to entice China MBI folks but anothrr big flop.

Proarte
Proarte
1 Sep 2019 1.48pm
Reply to  Lim Goh Poh

Komtar The Top is so old fashioned, how to attract modern crowd? Nothing exciting at all. The food is overpriced and the atmosphere is poor. DAPCat got a wrong consultant that did not understand modern trend and taste.

Milk Tea
Milk Tea
31 Aug 2019 1.21pm
Reply to  Ken Fong

Komtar is a soulless place, dirty and polluted. No economic activity at all! When was the last time you visit there????The TOP at Komtar is the total failure…. Empty!

Wei
Wei
31 Aug 2019 4.03pm
Reply to  Milk Tea

hehe…that is so right…tear down that … left by your Gelakan..headache for all subsequent government………..

Milk Tea
Milk Tea
1 Sep 2019 2.03am
Reply to  Wei

It is made worse by DAP. Tens of millions gone down the drain… 11 years in helm, still blaming others?

tunglang
tunglang
31 Aug 2019 1.45pm
Reply to  Ken Fong

The fact is Komtar is a dying dinosaur, not helped by the Dino theme park at the roof top. Those who have invested in the shoplifts (Level 1 – 3) are hoping to sell them ASAP. Only wai lao (Vientianese, Indonesians, Banglas) love that Komtar facing Gama. After 11 years of refurbishing, rebranding & pouring money into Komtar renovation, the end result is absolut vodka disappointing. I heard (a) bookstore will be shifting out. PgDAPCAT should have remade the whole complex including the Tower into a residential cum cultural melting pot for the young workforce & enterprising who live, work… Read more »

glissantia
glissantia
1 Sep 2019 12.24pm
Reply to  Ken Fong

Excess capital (including the criminal and trans-national sorts) drive these aspects of real estate “development”: (a) gentrification (b) urban sprawl (c) excess capacity. The medium-term result is (a) urban slums (b) higher costs (including delays) and pollution from transport (c) bankrupt cronies rescued using public wealth.

Capitalists are addicts. You cannot solve anything until you admit you have one.

Lim Goh Poh
Lim Goh Poh
1 Sep 2019 8.59pm
Reply to  Ken Fong

One way to revive soulless Komtar is to get famous Char Kway Teow stalls to migrate operation there.
Give incentives for Siam Road Maestro to fry at Komtar Walk or Ah Leng as below video :
https://youtu.be/GTGq-Bq3CNY

Lim Goh Poh
Lim Goh Poh
2 Sep 2019 11.11am
Reply to  Ken Fong

So many ho chak food in Penang like below if they are located within Komtar may be there’s revival hope?

https://youtu.be/VJ4EZo1VniM

What do you think of those Penang food recommended by NTV7?

Jordan
Jordan
31 Aug 2019 8.25pm

Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow says he is willing to debate MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong over the Penang undersea tunnel project.

“I’m willing to debate Wee if Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng is not debating him,” he said.

https://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2019/08/30/chow-willing-to-debate-wee-over-undersea-tunnel-project#CmHYXdV1jUCy2cup.99

Penang Forum can be the debate moderator.

tunglang
tunglang
1 Sep 2019 11.40am
Reply to  Jordan

How to debate when PgDAPCAT has no money.
If Got Money, Only Can Talk! (a seasoned retort from DAPCAT when you want to propose a project to a toe-the-line Pg YB)

Wei
Wei
31 Aug 2019 12.23pm

hehe…obviously this questionnaire as is with any other questionnaire is not for moron who know naught…most Penangites are knowledgeable and not as dumb as this author trying to make it out to be…and definitely no less smarter than the tree hugger think they are..

mmm……looks like they have running out of things to kbkp..now even a questionnaire also want to complain…pathetic

Jordan
Jordan
31 Aug 2019 7.38am

Gurney Wharf, Penang (August 2019):

Penang shoreline transformation?

Shriek
31 Aug 2019 4.42pm
Reply to  Anil Netto

Neither they show how the taxes are used to benefit Penang lang. But when completed, who knows. A popular hunting ground for Penang forum instead of squaring beside the road and compete with smog and dust from cars.

Angelo
Angelo
1 Sep 2019 1.37pm
Reply to  Jordan

The new front is much cleaner now.
Certainly can generate more business activities and create jobs.

Wei
Wei
2 Sep 2019 10.54am
Reply to  Angelo

Penang forum is anti business, anti corporation and anti more jobs , but they claim they defend livelihood of B40, fisherman and minimum wages…who is providing jobs to B40 if not businesses and corporation? you or Penang forum ? ? who is paying taxes to government that is eventually channeled back to help B40…you or Penang forum ??