KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 2 — The construction cost of the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) project remained unchanged at RM50.27 billion, even after the Selangor government approved the proposed ECRL North Line Section C, said Transport Minister Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong.

He said the Selangor government’s decision would finalise the construction of the 665-kilometre (km) ECRL line which includes 59 tunnels with a total length of 61km as well as several flyovers with a total length of 127km.

“The estimated cost of RM50.27 billion takes into account the construction works of the 16.39km Genting twin tunnel using two state-of-the-art tunnel boring machines (TBM) and the 14.10km Serendah Tunnel through blasting and drilling methods.

“The cost of the ECRL will also include the rolling stock of the ECRL when it operates later, consisting of electric multiple unit (EMU) sets for passengers and locomotives as well as wagons for cargo services,” he told a press conference after the ECRL Section C (North Line) document presentation ceremony here, today.

In his speech earlier, Wee said the ECRL North Line would include the Serendah Bypass which is much-needed for Keretapi Tanah Melayu Bhd’s (KTMB) rail services into the ECRL project scope.

“Twin tracks comprising metre gauge and standard gauge tracks will be built between Serendah and Port Klang.

“The Serendah Bypass will serve as an important freight relief line for KTMB’s cargo rail services as it would bypass the busy Kuala Lumpur city centre,” he said.

He added that the Serendah Bypass is also expected to increase cargo volume for ECRL by accommodating cargo from the East Coast states and existing KTMB routes.

“The realignment of the ECRL to the original alignment will make ECRL a viable infrastructure in line with a revenue ratio of 70 per cent cargo services and 30 per cent passenger services.

“On this factor, the ECRL alignment will include a dual gauge track of about 30km from the Jalan Kastam ECRL station to the Northport and Westport areas,” he said.

Wee said the construction of the ECRL was also expected to further drive the growth of the construction and building materials sector as well as support the recruitment of local manpower for construction-related activities. — Bernama