Park-and-ride: The Best way to go

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The Bridge Express Shuttle Transit (Best) system between mainland Penang and Penang Island has been launched. Definitely a move in the right direction – and we cannot afford to let it fail.

For a start the buses are running from Sunway Carnival in Seberang Jaya, where people can park their cars, to the Bayan Lepas industrial zone. Let these buses run for a month or so and then conduct a review to iron out the chinks kinks – or better still conduct weekly reviews.

The Star reports on the launch on 1 March here.

You just need to pay RM1 for the parking.

Here’s a Star report on the service:

WITH the Best shuttle system, 16 Rapid Penang buses will take commuters from Seberang Jaya to factories in the Bayan Lepas Free Industrial Zone (FIZ) from Monday to Friday.

Commuters will need to pay RM1 to park their cars in Sunway Carnival Mall’s car park and board the buses at the bus stop outside Billion Shopping Centre in Seberang Jaya between 5.30am and 8.10am.

The buses will make return trips starting from the bus stop outside Kompleks Bukit Jambul in Bayan Baru through the FIZ area between 4.30pm and 7.30pm.

Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said the state government is spending RM160,000 a month for the shuttle system, noting that Rapid Penang had given a RM16,000 monthly discount from its original quotation of RM176,000 per month.

“Apart from saving RM250 in travelling costs and reducing cars travelling on the Penang Bridge, commuters can have stress-free rides on these buses, which have free Wifi service,” he said.

More details on the Penang Transport Council website here.

All of us should seriously consider taking public transport to work, wherever possible. You can find a Rapid journey planner here. You can also phone Rapid to find out what time the next bus is arriving. Senior citizens get 50 per cent off!

I think most people are in the dark now about where to buy a Rapid monthly season ticket, apart from the Rapid office. You can get a 30-day Rapid Preferred pass for RM75 by applying for one here. I am planning to get one.

RapidPenang should make its monthly season tickets widely available, and these may be sold in say, news agents and mini-markets across Penang. Maybe there should be a special promotional offer of say RM30 per month for the next six months to encourage more people to use the bus.

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Shana Babu

Anil,

According to this newspaper report dated 22 April 2011 on Kwong Hwa Jit Poh, BEST has been a success with 400 regular users, 90% being white-collar workers.

Currently there are 16 BEST buses, each taking 60 passengers.
200 new buses will be added next year. Another station will be set up at Bukit Mertajam.

http://www.kwongwah.com.my/news/2011/04/22/20.html

http://www.kwongwah.com.my/news/2011/04/22/20.html

raj

a great idea! Way to go, Penang.

Ong Eu Soon

This is the guy who promised that he will personally market sPICE to make sure that it a success, but look at this BEST service he can’t even make a publicity blitz out of it. The BEST he can do is mingled with senior citizens with our money for his personal political agenda which is not sustainable in the long run. A vote of no confident for this badly planned BEST service which lack the foresight on how to ferry commuters in the fastest way without delay. With such a small loading, the service already can’t measured up, what kind… Read more »

Penang Voter

Did GELAKAN ever thought of it…?????

This is Penang, for all Penangnites not Penang BN Sdn Bhd.

Ong Eu Soon

The most stupid thing is using the shuttle buses to ferry the commuters direct to their respective destinations. Waiting for the shuttle buses to go merry go round before reaching the destination will only … off those who want to use the BEST service which is not best at all. This will only guarantee delay whether there is a jam on the bridge or not. If the planner can’t see the need of using feeder buses to ferry commuters in the fastest way to their respective destination, no way will the BEST service end up being BEST. What a fool!

Ong Eu Soon

First day 80+ commuters, second day 110+ commuters. That is a big failure. With that kind of loading, the buses still failed to deliver the commuters in time without delay. If there is really a 1000+ commuters then it will end up a big disaster. Only fool believe that the state government got brain when no brainers are running the show.

JayTee

Anil,

I greatly appreciate the park n ride system introduced. The word amongst staff in my bayan lepas office has been positive.

btw, what rapid SHOULD do is post signs at their stops telling WHICH buses stop by and HOW often. A basic map/list of stops will help also. Just like what they do in Gurney Drive to Batu Feringhi

Many times we walk to a bus stop & have no idea what bus stop by.

will write & cc: similar letter to rapid, yb, state gov…

passion1

Yes. Good idea. It is being practiced in other cities, like S’pore and Europe. Use numbers and color bands.

KsKhoo

On a more serious note ; all these talk of BN controlled media etc that supposedly depriving penangites from information,etc That is why we have blogs where we , the concerned would use to pass on our thoughts and intentionsfor common good. Sadly I read many comments on blogs to be totally shallow and timewasting. Maybe some of you out there are cyberwarriors from BN . If we persists to be so indifferent – then WE DESERVE a gov like BN !!! Agreed ? Come on grow up and act yr part….. ! Meanwhile my bags are packed !! Enjoy!… Read more »

Sean

“So, what is the purpose of my BMW”
I thought it was to make up for – you know – inadequacies. I don’t think you actually have to drive it for that. Perhaps just polishing it frequently outside your house will be good enough?

Gerakan K

So, what is the purpose of my BMW if I need to park it and take bus instead ???

Andrew I

Sell it.

Gerakan K

Cannot lah. That is my birthday gift.

Andrew I

That person deserves our deepest sympathies.

Yang

Gerakan K just like UMNO & BN are just spinning half truth and true lies. Its not that I wanted to look down on him but he certainly cannot afford a BMW unless of course its a worn out 30 over years model which may cost only a couple of thousand only.. Remember during the Hulu Selangor by election recently, he said he is staying in HS and his minimarket was mostly concentrated in Hulu Selangor. Now he is spinning that he have to use his BMW to the mainland and that his business is concentrated in the mainland. …… Read more »

Karamjit

A good example of a BN supporter who do not support its own Proton.

Gerakan K

I’m proud enough to say that for my business usage, I have 3 kancils (second hand) and 2 second hand Sagas (the old 198? version). 3 Modenas motocycles for office boy and lunch “ta bao” transport.

Waja for my 2 sons and my wife prefer taxi more than anything else.

I think I deserve special income tax reduction for supporting our national car.

Andrew I

No problemo. Quite sure KTK can come up with an arrangement for you. Part of his KPJ, KPB, KPY, KPX job description.

LimBC

A good example of a selfish man.

statistician

Various options:-
1. turn ur BMW into a cozy date-n-dine for young couples. Been in one at St Louis USA. Various brands’ car body refurbished into dining corners!

2. sell it off la. then buy a national car to support Proton.

3. let your wife use BMW lah. you can park a kancil there

KSKhoo

Hey It would be good to hear from those who are involved – meaning those of you who actually work in the factories ! Saying good or singing praises of the state gov would not help it keep the project afloat ! Come on , lack of publicity is just lame …when there were more than 1,000 positive responses to the initial survey …Time to Walk the Talk , penangites . What say you ??? A suggestion is that if there could be a dedicated bus lane during peak hours on certain ( such as CBD ) routes that is… Read more »

Sammy

Lack of publicity because bn-controlled MSM will not give it the coverage.

Astro Awani (channel 501) is really sucks with its biased reporting on by-election matters. No credibility at all. Astro is trying to upstage Media Prima to be a better mouthpiece for BN.

Penang Voter

NO REGRETS GIVING MY VOTE TO PAKATAN.

COME GE-13, MY VOTE, FAMILY VOTES, FRIENDS VOTES AND ALL THOSE I KNOW WILL BE FOR PAKATAN OR ANY OTHER EXCEPT BN.

KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK. WE ARE PROUD OF YOU.

kate

perhaps ‘iron out the kinks’ ? Kinks as in wrinkles that could be ironed out. Anyway – kudos to Penang govt for helping out the man-in-the-street who has to struggle to make ends meet! Long may you rule!!! :-))

Sean

Kinks! Of course! You are the winner of today’s prize.

Sean

“iron out the chinks” I LOLed, sorry…or maybe it just had some uniquely Malaysian connotation to it … looked at … in a … certain light. I think that’s a mixed metaphor: surely one would ‘iron out the wrinkles’? ‘Chinks’ are also gaps or holes that shouldn’t be there, such as a ‘chink in my armour’ – not as likely a metaphor expressed positively, but I think you’d want to ‘*seal* the chinks’. The pnr project sounds great – I think you’re right about an initial promotional period to get people to try it. The hardest part of being an… Read more »

Sean

Usage always wins in the end – one day we’ll all communicate in the Australian Rules Football Coach’s English.

=p

Jong

LOL!! Anil, you live by the fridge huh? ….cool lah! 😀

raj

actually, it’s iron out the kinks… but, hey, this is penang.. what can we say?

moo_t

A good start to prepare Penang people for the fuel hikes that will come soon.

KM

More publicity is needed to encourage more to use this facility. Great effort to start anyway with a noble thought to help the needy and reduce cars on the bridge/road.

MyBlog

Well Done Penang!!

Feringgi Boy

I doubt BN will ever think of such a simple yet brilliant idea.
Afterall, it will accelerate the demise of Proton who is now suffering financially to keep lotus afloat.

The National Automobile Policy by BN is to make people buy more cars without any proper plan for public transportation.

Kudos to pakatan in Penang!!!

Andrew I

Not forgetting less revenue for the owners of Penang Bridge. They must be seething.

Musmail

A good job by the Penang state governemnt despite being allocated the lowest percentage of federal grants among all states in the country compared to the tax revenues contributed by the states. This is a true example of ‘Rakyat didahulukan’. The Finance Ministry statistics has shown that the state was given a mere RM794 million over eight years (2001 to 2008) for its consolidated funds. The amount came up to a paltry 3% of the RM25.67 billion in taxes collected from the state by the federal government during the same period. In contrast, other states received much higher percentages in… Read more »