Local consortium wins bid for RM27b Penang transportation plan

Lim said SRS will have to execute the massive infrastructure project with no cost-overruns or delays caused by non-performing contractors. — Picture by K.E. Ooi
Lim said SRS will have to execute the massive infrastructure project with no cost-overruns or delays caused by non-performing contractors. — Picture by K.E. Ooi

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GEORGE TOWN, Aug 14 — The Penang government today announced the appointment of SRS Consortium as the project delivery partner (PDP) for the RM27 billion Penang Transport Master Plan.

Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said the consortium was selected for the award from the six tenders that was received for the project.

"They were appointed based on their extensive expertise on mass rail transit, public transport infrastructure and large-scale township development," he told a press conference at the presentation of the appointment letter to SRS.

The SRS Consortium comprises Gamuda BERHAD (60 per cent), Penang-based Loh Phoy Yen Holdings Sdn Bhd (20 per cent) and Ideal Property Development Sdn Bhd (20 per cent).

Lim said the PDP is tasked to first get the relevant approvals and permits from the federal government for the proposed public transportation systems under the project, which includes a Light Rail Transit, trams, buses and water taxies.

He emphasised that the state tender board, headed by the state secretary, was the party that selected the winning bidder before submitting it for the state executive council’s approval.

With the appointment of SRS, Lim said the consortium will be working closely with the state for the next six months to ascertain the detailed execution master plan, engineering designs, gather public feedback and to obtain all relevant approvals for each component of the project.

"The project will be financed by a land swap but it is still too early to talk about this because they have to overcome the biggest challenge first, which is to get all the approvals and permits,"he said.

Amongst the proposed systems under the project are trams for the heritage zone, LRT for both the island and the mainland, as well as water taxies.

Lim said SRS will have to execute the massive infrastructure project with no cost-overruns or delays caused by non-performing contractors.

"SRS will bear the expenses and costs incurred in the event that no approvals for each component are obtained from the federal government," he added.

Once the consortium obtains the approvals, it will call for open tenders for the various project packages. The first phase of the project is expected to be rolled out by 2017.

Lim dubbed the whole project as one of the biggest infrastructure projects in the country outside of Klang.

The Penang Transport Master Plan is a comprehensive plan to resolve traffic congestion woes on the island and it includes suggestions for a more comprehensive public transportation system by introducing the LRT along with more public buses, the undersea tunnel connecting the island to the mainland and expansion of major roads.

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