KUANTAN, Dec 11 — The overall rate of progress of the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) project has reached over 56 per cent as of November, said Transport Minister Anthony Loke Siew Fook.
The progress of the mega project, according to him, is in line with the project’s completion schedule from Kota Bharu, Kelantan to the Gombak Integrated Terminal in December 2026. The ECRL is scheduled to be operational in January 2027.
“This year is also the peak year for the construction of this project. The ECRL project entered a new phase of construction early this year, involving the installation of flyover beams and the construction of the train stations and depots.
“Soon, the ECRL project will involve the construction of the electrification, signalling and telecommunications systems for the operation of the passenger and cargo trains,” he said at the ceremony to instal the first ECRL track at the Section 10 ECRL Station Site in Gebeng here today.
The Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah, who was accompanied by the Raja Permaisuri Agong, Tunku Azizah Aminah Maimunah Iskandariah, officiated the ceremony to instal the first ECRL track.
Once the project is completed, Loke said East Coast folks will enjoy a new chapter in the country’s transportation system which, among others, will enable residents of Kuantan to arrive in Kuala Lumpur in just one and a half hours compared to three hours by road.
In addition, Loke also said that so far, 23,000 workers are involved in carrying out work at 1,900 construction sites along the alignment while 26 tunnels have been excavated through the use of the drill and blast methods.
“The excavation of the Genting twin tunnel measuring 16.39 kilometres, with a combination of drilling, blasting as tunnel boring machine, had reached a depth of nearly six kilometres for both sides of the tunnel and is expected to be fully excavated in the second quarter of 2025,” he said.
As for work on the ECRL flyover, which covers a length of 145km, he said that so far the installation of flyover beams had reached over 60km.
The ECRL track from Kota Bharu, Kelantan to Port Klang, Selangor involves the construction of 20 stations, covering 10 passenger and 10 combined passenger and cargo stations; with seven stations in Pahang, six in Terengganu, two in Kelantan and five in Selangor.
“The Transport Ministry is optimistic that the KPC, Cherating, KotaSAS and Paya Besar stations will further boost the administration of the Kuantan district, which has over 600,000 residents,” he said. — Bernama