Bus Rapid Transit System
Published on: Friday, October 23, 2015

Kota Kinabalu: The current economic situation is hampering the government's effort to improve and develop infrastructure for the people but it does not mean the government is resting on its laurels.Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman (pic) said currently, the government is collecting information and gathering feedback from a select committee on how to solve the transportation dilemma in the State.

"We need the feedback which can help us dictate what we can do here and once we have strong finance again, we will implement the proposals," he said when launching the Town Planning Conference 2015, here, Thursday.

Musa said one of the proposals which he received is the implementation of the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, a bus-based mass transit system.

A true BRT system generally has specialised design, services and infrastructure to improve system quality and remove the typical causes of delay. Sometimes described as a "surface subway", BRT aims to combine the capacity and speed of light rail or metro with the flexibility, lower cost and simplicity of a bus system.

Musa said he understands the people's grief who are constantly faced with terrible traffic congestion on daily basis, especially during peak hours.

"Even though I have riders (escorts), it does not mean I am unaware of this problem. Many times, I am also stuck in traffic, despite all the riders. If the traffic is really bad, who can go through?" he said.

This is why, he said, it is imperative that an efficient public transportation system is put in place to reduce the number of vehicles on the road.

"In this context, effective transportation infrastructure is very critical to the development of the State as it would determine our towns' level of competitiveness and sustainability. Without an efficient transportation system, our economy will not grow as we have hoped.

"Therefore, the existence of an orderly, efficient and effective public transportation system can serve as a catalyst to stimulate and accelerate the development and growth of domestic economic sectors and provide comfort to the people," he said.

Billions of ringgit, he said, are needed to provide the people with efficient and effective transportation system but for now, because of the economic situation such as the slumping price of CPO and low price of oil in the global market, the money is not readily available.

"We must accept that we are facing a difficult time right now but we will continue to plan and once we have stronger financial capability, we will implement those plans," he said.

Meanwhile, Musa urged developers to be patient and to understand the government's policy with regards to the approval of their development plans.

Not all development plans, he said, will be approved because there are many issues that need to be considered, chiefly among these, the effect of a development project on traffic flow.

He said the government does not simply approve any development plan and any proposal will be deliberated by the Cabinet before it is approved or rejected.

"If we foresee that the proposal will give adverse impact to the environment or to the initial planning of the government, we will reconsider," he said.

He stressed that public transportation planning must be given the priority in implementing the policies and strategies in the development of a city.

Addressing transportation needs in the planning of cities, he said, is one of the key aspects that contributes to the creation of a more 'liveable' city.


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