SHAH ALAM, Aug 1 — The Petaling Jaya Dispersal Link (PJD Link) that Selangor cancelled yesterday might be revived if it could meet requirements and satisfy residents, caretaker mentri besar Datuk Seri Amirudin Shari conceded last night.
However, he said the cancellation he announced earlier yesterday was final and not something that would be revisited after the state election on August 12.
“For us, the people is our utmost priority and we do not wish to gamble with the people’s livelihood just for the sake of development.
“However, at the same time, there is a necessity to further develop Petaling Jaya and to introduce a more effective traffic dispersal system, so we shall see again.
“If they (developer) can fulfil the conditions set by the state and appease the people, we can continue ahead with it; however, at this very moment, they cannot do so because of certain unmet conditions,” he told reporters after launching the Pakatan Harapan-Barisan Nasional manifesto for Selangor here.
The PJD Link was a proposal to build a 34.3km dual-carriage expressway with four lanes and eight interchanges/ramps as an alternative to the heavily-trafficked Lebuhraya-Damansara Puchong (LDP) to connect various fast-growing townships with Bandar Utama at one end and Bukit Jalil at the other end.
The PJD Link was approved by the previous federal government under the prime ministership of Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob in April last year.
It bore a striking resemblance to the controversial Kidex that was cancelled in 2015 by the Selangor government then under the Pakatan Harapan (PH) leadership of Datuk Seri Azmin Ali who has since joined Bersatu, a party that is today a component of the Perikatan Nasional (PN) coalition.
Azmin pulled the plug on Kidex in February 2015 because its developer did not produce relevant supporting studies for its proposal, namely an SIA, a traffic impact assessment (TIA), and an environmental impact assessment (EIA) besides failing to reveal the toll rates and full concession agreement.
Amirudin said the PJD Link was approved in principle by the federal government on November 12, 2017 – then under Barisan Nasional control.
He said the proposal was then submitted to the Selangor Economic Action Council on September 3, 2020 for a residential survey to be carried out in Petaling Jaya before it was presented to the federal government on November 12, 2021 and given a conditional approval.
The condition meant that the developer would have to meet all the requirements set by the Selangor government before it can proceed with construction.
Amirudin said that a concession agreement was signed between the PN federal government and the developer on April 5, 2022 for the construction company to conduct a full EIA, SIA, and TIA before the deal could be “activated”.
An independent survey released in May showed that 93.6 per cent of residents living along the proposed alignment of the PJD Link disagreed with the project, as they believed that noise and air pollution from the proposed highway would be intolerable and that it would not reduce traffic congestion as promised either.
Similarly, 93.6 per cent of the residents surveyed agreed that they and their families would be impacted by the project.
A residents group calling itself Say No to PJD Link opposed to the proposed highway filed a lawsuit in June against the Director General of the Department of Town and Country Planning, the Selangor State Director of the Department of Town and Country Planning, the Selangor State Government and the Malaysian Government to obtain classified documents after claiming a lack of transparency in the conditional approval.