MRT first phase opens on Friday

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Petaling Jaya: The first phase of the Sg Buloh-Kajang Line – to be launched next Friday – is not expected to be heavily used for the moment.

Once the entire line is fully operational, however, it will serve some 400,000 passengers.

The launch will see 12 MRT stations open for commuters – Sg Buloh, Kampung Selamat, Kwasa Damansara, Kwasa Sentral, Kota Damansara, Surian, Mutiara Damansara, Bandar Utama, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, Phileo Damansara, Pusat Bandar Damansara and Semantan.

Mass Rapid Transit Corporation Sdn Bhd strategic communications and stakeholder relations director Datuk Najmuddin Abdullah said it did not expect Phase 1 to be heavily utilised.

This was partly due to KTM Komuter at Sg Buloh being the only connection to the line under Phase 1, he said.

“The line does not connect to other rail-based services and it does not come into the city centre,” he said yesterday.

The 23km-long alignment is expected to be launched by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak who took a preview ride on the train with several bloggers and social activists on Friday.

Najmuddin said with the completion of Phase Two – which stretches for another 19 stations to Kajang – operations would begin to serve the estimated 1.2 million people living along that that corridor.

“This means they will have easy access to the line. We expect around 400,000 passengers to use it (daily) when it is fully operational,” he said.

When fully operational, Najmud­din said it would help to remove some cars from roads, especially for those in areas such as Sg Buloh, Kota Damansara, Bandar Utama, Cheras and Kajang and those working in the city centre.

“The capacity of the line is 20,000 passengers per hour per direction. Each MRT train, which has four coaches, can carry 1,200 people.

“During peak hours, the frequency of trains is one every 3.5 minutes,” said Najmuddin.

At present, driving from Sg Buloh to Phileo Damansara here during the morning rush hour can take up to 90 minutes.

Commuters using the MRT will be able to travel from as low as RM1 for a single stop based on the cashless fare structure.

Rapid Rail Sdn Bhd said the maximum fare will be RM6.40 based on the cash fare structure and RM5.50 based on the cashless fare structure.

Some 120 feeder buses will also be deployed on 26 routes to service the 12 stations between Sungai Buloh and Semantan that make up the first phase of the MRT line.

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News Source:(Sim Leoi Leoi)

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