Penang Transport Master Plan tender awarded


The Penang state government has awarded a RM3.2m tender for a Penang Transport Master Plan study to a planning and urban design firm based in Petaling Jaya.

AJC Planning Consultants Sdn Bhd will work with Halcrow Consultants Sdn Bhd and the Singapore Cruise Centre, according to a press report.

AJC is led by planner Ahmad Jefri Clyde and architect-urban designer Mok Chee Pan. (Interestingly enough, Clyde happens to be the technical adviser to PJ residents associations protesting at the massive PJ Sentral project in Section 52.)

AJC is presently involved in various local projects such as the Kota Kemuning Township, Shah Alam; Ampar Tenang, Selangor; Technology Park, Kuala Lumpur; @enstek, Negeri Sembilan; Ampangan, Seremban, (Bandar Warisan Putri); and Nusajaya Central Planning Area, Johor. The Penang state blueprint could well be its biggest local study in terms of area covered.

It is interesting to see the involvement of Singapore Cruise Centre, which manages and operates three ferry terminals and a cruise terminal in Singapore. It is important that the Penang ferries be included as part of a seamless, integrated public transport ticketing system that can also be used on Rapid Penang buses and perhaps later, trams for the city. The full potential of the ferry system also needs to be tapped.

Halcrow of course is a major international transport planning consultancy with an office in KL. It was involved in the master planning of KLIA and the Putra LRT system.

AJC was selected from six tender bids to carry out a 11-month study on Penang’s congestion and to come up with a state-wide blue-print for the future. Two public consultations would also be held during the study period. The study is expected to be completed by March 2012.

Of the RM3.2m award, RM1.5m will be contributed by the Northern Corridor Implementation Authority (NCIA), which is believed to have wanted a component on the use of the waterways around Penang.

The award of the tender was initially planned for March-April 2010 and the master plan expected to be completed this year, as reported in The Star in March 2010. I am wonder why this study was not commissioned much earlier – like soon after March 2008, for instance – as overcoming congestion is a priority for Penang. Still, better late than never.

I hope the plan will place be driven by a sustainable public transport driven agenda (not necessarily big tickets infrastructure projects), which puts the emphasis on buses, ferries, LRT and/or trams, and cycling and pedestrians networks (which should be linked with public transport) – rather than private cars. Penang is already congested as it is.

Hopefully, the planners will also take into consideration other earlier studies in Penang and find out why those never took off.

It would also be better for the proposed two stretches of tunnels and elevated highways on Penang Island estimated at RM4bn to be put on hold. (One thing that puzzles me is how the state government plans to finance this as the amount involved is several times bigger than the state government’s annual budget.) These should be independently assessed to find out if there are other more sustainable and cost-efficient public transport alternatives.

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No Mr Ong.

The tunnel will not deny Penang port the opportunity for further growth.
Vessels are normally parked far out in the sea and feeder barges carry those goods to the port.

Look at the port in Singapore from the air and you’ll understand what I mean.

Ong Eu Soon

Desperate to be seem as a capable leader, LGe has stooge so low to revive the much criticised proposal of Samy Vellu to build a tunnel linking the island to the mainland. By building the tunnel, the Penang state government will effectively deny the opportunity for Penang port to develop as an ultimate hub for sea freight, and deny Penang the opportunity for further growth. If the tunnel project go ahead the Penang port will be limited to the present capacity for the sea freight, it cannot deepen the port for bigger ships with much bigger capacity. Most of the… Read more »


There is always a demand for private cars even if we have good public transportation. Owning a car is a must among many young people. It is a pre-requisite for a guy if he wish to impress his first date, according to the account of many of my friends.


I agree. That’s why TopGear magazine is a hit among the young people.

If you do not take public bus in your childhood days (i.e. your parents fetch you in private cars), very likely you will shun public bus when you grow up as a working adult.


Movies like ‘Fast & Furious’ will fire up the ambition of any youngsters to have their own cars, instead o taking public buses.


If you watch ‘The Making Of’ Fast & Furious (the bonus material on the DVD), you will notice that most of the so-called stunts are done in studio with green-screen background for computer editing later for special effects.

My message to those adrenaline-charged Malaysian motorists: Please do not imitate in on Malaysian road. You will either get yourself killed or you will kill innocent people!


RM500M/KM … not bad ya … kinda sounds like everyone loves mega projects … its all for the developers, so that their property can sell easier and also justify the traffic issues. Hahahahahaaa … same la … BN ker DAP ker … all the same.

Andrew I

One difference. With political competition, the astronomical cost of development projects, inclusive of “extras”, will be reduced.


Breaking News! Gurney drive to Butterworth tunnel’s MOU signed today. Where do this come from?


My ideal, not in order of any priority: 1) A dedicated express bus terminal close to the island end of the 2nd bridge, so that the express buses do not have to enter the city. (It’s closer to the airport too). 2) An enhanced Rapid Penang fleet running on NGV covering the island, mainland, Kulim, Sg Petani and Parit Buntar 3)With that a good pavement system, probably with covers where possible to encourage people to walk to the bus stops/ transit stations. 4) 4 rail transit lines covering the followings (with full awareness that this is not cheap, but again… Read more »

ivan ho

Good suggestion….but need to plant huge trees along the pedestrian walk as it will be too hot to walk especially from around 11am to at least 5pm everyday.

Penang Lang

Dear Hafiz,
As current situation puts it, you just can’t do any mass transportation system without the approval from Putra Jaya.

Until the time Penang has full rights to its own Mass Transportation system – and no longer kow tow to Putra Jaya – then only it is meaningful to talk about “express bus” or whatever type of mass transportation system.


Penang Lang, If you check the article again, the successful bid was selected from 6 companies that submitted bids for the tender.
Lets see what comes out from The Master Plan.
Wonder if Ah Soon did bid for this tender.


Anil, If the elevated highway/tunnel package comes out to RM4 billion, the state government will not be able to undertake it as you’ve correctly pointed out. Moreover, the state cannot commit itself to borrowing to finance the project without the approval of the federal treasury.

Therefore, the effort has to be from private initiative.
Expect either land (or right to reclaim land) in exchange for the highway/tunnel package or users pay a toll to use them.

Christine Yong

I think it is okay, if everything is done properly after studying the pros and cons. HK and Singapore reclaim plenty of land…….learn from them, think outside the box !!

Penang Lang

You are wrong !

The states can borrow money without having to go through the Federal government.

And the Penang State is worth much more than 4 Billions.


the contractor can opp for toll collection, china boys self financing collect toll for a period, ok wat.

wait for federal nothing done, why do we kpay tax


No Penang lang. No state in Malaysia can borrow money nor guarantee a loan without the agreement of the federal government. Go read federal constitution, article 111 (2)&(3) (2) A State shall not borrow except under the authority of State law, and State law shall not authorise a State to borrow except from the Federation or, for a period not exceeding five years, from a bank or other financial source approved for that purpose by the Federal Government, and subject to such conditions as may be specified by the Federal Government. (3) A State shall not give any guarantee except… Read more »

Christine Yong

I turst the award is made using CAT system. Pg has indeed shown some positive results in various developements and during the past 3 years accumulated some state funds. Perhaps It is right time to spend on infrastructure projects to further build the city. HK has one of the most effective transport system, it is helpful to learn how to coordinate and integrate the various modes of transport including Ferry, Road, Tunnels, Buses, Minibuses, Tram and MRT (include in the plan although it is not possible to build in the near future-unless Federal allocates funds). God bless the City !!

Penang Lang

Don’t trust anything you don’t know.

Give us the proof that the award was given to a Petaling Jaya firm based on CAT.

I have my suspicions:


2. Why hire a Petaling Jaya company to deal with Penang’s traffic jam when the Penang people know more than those from Petaling Jaya.

3. The Petaling Jaya traffic problem isn’t that smooth either.

Gerakan K

Anil statement:
One thing that puzzles me is how the state government plans to finance this as the amount involved is several times bigger than the state government’s annual budget

They will do a ‘Kg Buah Pala’ or ask Petronas $ or will do it when pr capture Putrajaya, a.k.a. I help you, you help me (pr version)

p/s: Kg Buah Pala = new synonym for broken promises. Sometimes, pr machais have to agree with our PM and DPM words, pr’s promises are unrealistic and just too good to be true


For 18 years under Gerakan Zero KPI KTK, Penangite get nothing but incompetency and corruption. Less than a year after 08, PR LGE competent and corrupt free govt is able to provide free wifi, water, bus shuttle and give RM100 every to senior citizen and RM1,000 for obituary expenses. When PR LGE come out with a plan so can it come out with the finance and the promises. Unlike UMNO & weakling Gerakan KTK, PR under LGE is competent and free from corruption Kg Buah Pala whether broken promises or not, the 15 KBP residents will get to own a… Read more »

Penang Lang

I like to know if there was any open tender for this project?

Where was the tender listed?

Can anyone supply any information, please?

Thank you !