GEORGE TOWN, April 17 — Penang Barisan Nasional (BN) chairman Teng Chang Yeow today said the planned three paired roads project along the RM6.3 billion proposed undersea tunnel will be cancelled if they win the state.
“The three highways don’t address traffic conditions in the state at all so the project will also be dropped if we win back the state,” he said.
In Penang BN’s manifesto that was launched on Sunday, the party had initially promised to drop the controversial undersea tunnel project here.
Teng said the project was only expected to start in 2027 so it can be cancelled without the state needing to pay compensation.
As for the three highways, he said the hotspots for traffic dispersal were not along the planned highways.
“The traffic congestion hotspots are in George Town, from Batu Maung to the Free Industrial Zone, Bayan Lepas to George Town, Jalan Air Itam, junction of Perai to Seberang Jaya and the junction of Juru,” he said.
The three highways, which are part of the undersea tunnel project, will connect Tanjung Bungah with Teluk Bahang, Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu Expressway with Air Itam and Gurney Drive with Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu Expressway.
Teng said the highways would only bring more traffic to the Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu Expressway instead of easing traffic at congested places.
“The entire traffic dispersal system in Penang is not formulated to disperse traffic,” he said.
He claimed the number of traffic lights had doubled, if not tripled in George Town.
“The traffic system, traffic lights and pedestrian crossing were not properly planned to calculate the needs of pedestrians and cars,” he said.
Teng labelled Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng as “ignorant, arrogant and atrocious” for saying that the Penang BN manifesto was a copycat of Pakatan Harapan’s (PH).
He said the 60 initiatives in the manifesto were formulated after much research, with the intention of benefitting as many Penang people as possible.
He said BN launched RapidPenang in 2017, negating Lim’s accusations that there was no public transport system planned in the state.
On their promise to cancel reclamation projects by PH, Teng said this would include the 131-acre Gurney Wharf project.
“We have to look at the agreement on the 700 acres of Seri Tanjung Pinang 2 reclamation project off Tanjung Tokong to see if we can cancel it too,” he said.
The undersea tunnel and planned reclamation projects in the state are hot-button topics that have been repeatedly highlighted in the media over the past few years.