Alternative HSR Proposal Costs Only RM20 billion Instead Of Original RM70 billion

Pavither 21 Jun 2018

With the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore high speed rail (HSR) project among the projects shelved off, the Pakatan Harapan government has been presented with an alternative proposal which will only cost RM20 billion – way cheaper compared to the HSR project’s cost of between RM60 billion and RM70 billion.

The alternative plan involves utilising and upgrading the present double-track infrastructure of Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM) to enable it to cater to both standard gauge and meter gauge trains.

This can be achieved by placing a single line next to the double-track, reported The Star.

Meter gauge tracks are narrower causing the train to travel at a slower speed. Standard gauge tracks, on the other hand, are wider, allowing the trains to travel faster at a speed of 200km per hour.

While HSR can travel up to 320km per hour, it would, however, require a completely new alignment.

Consultants believe that the longer travel time of 130 minutes to Singapore compared with the HSR’s 90 minutes, can be reduced if the government would allow third parties to operate KTM rail lines.

This comes as third parties are “prepared to invest in better locomotives and run operations on a commercial basis”.

Sources noted that the upgrading of the existing railway tracks would also “involve minimal land acquisition, minimal disruption to existing system and complement the entire national railway network”.

“It would not lead to a duplication of railway lines,” added sources.

Aside from these, the government would also save around RM500 million since it will no longer need to re-negotiate with the city-state as the plans put in place by the Singapore authorities will not be disrupted.


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