Penang streetscapes to be more pedestrian friendly, says exco

The upgrading works of China Street Ghaut Streetscape is to improve accessibility and walkability, March 1, 2018. ― Pictures by KE Ooi
The upgrading works of China Street Ghaut Streetscape is to improve accessibility and walkability, March 1, 2018. ― Pictures by KE Ooi

GEORGE TOWN, March 1 ― Penang’s streetscapes will be transformed into pedestrian-friendly public spaces in stages especially around the heritage city of George Town, said Penang exco Chow Kon Yeow.

The local government, traffic management and flood mitigation committee chairman said this is part of the transformation planned for Penang so that it is accessible to all.

“This is so that people can use these spaces, either for cycling, walking or to take a rest,” he said at a press conference after visiting the upgrading works of China Street Ghaut Streetscape.

The Penang Island City Council (MBPP) together with George Town Conservation and Development Corporation Sdn Bhd (GTCDC) are working on the upgrade.

MBPP Mayor Yew Tung Seang said the overall project, implemented in three phases, costs RM3 million.

“MBPP funded RM2.4 million for the project while the balance is funded by Think City,” he said.

Phase one of the project, which started end of last year, involved the upgrading of the pedestrian walkway along Wisma Yeap Chor Ee and Wisma Kastam by improving accessibility, drainage repair and greening.

Penang Exco Chow Kon Yeow (seated, left) and MBPP Mayor Yew Tung Seang (seated, centre) sit on one of the public chairs at China Street Ghaut in George Town March 1, 2018.
Penang Exco Chow Kon Yeow (seated, left) and MBPP Mayor Yew Tung Seang (seated, centre) sit on one of the public chairs at China Street Ghaut in George Town March 1, 2018.

Phase two will involve upgrading the walkways along Disted College and George Town Chambers which is expected to start soon.

The final phase will involve upgrading the drainage outfall at Weld Quay which will alleviate flood issues in this area.

Chow said the area is often floods especially during high tide due to the colonial drainage outlets.

He said the upgrade will resolve the flood issues in the area.

The China Street Ghaut was identified as a main pedestrian spine under George Town’s special area plan and the project was aimed at upgrading the infrastructure, enhance the streetscape, reduce traffic speed, promote walkability and cycling as well as  improve connectivity and activity in the east seafront of the precinct.

The overall project is expected to be fully completed by July this year.

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