Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Restarting the Teluk Kumbar-Pekan Genting Road Construction

THE RM57mil Teluk Kumbar-Pekan Genting road straightening and widening project in Penang is set to be revived as a new developer has been appointed to complete the abandoned project.

State Works, Utilities and Transportation Committee chairman Lim Hock Seng said the Federal Government had chosen Sarahon Construction Sdn Bhd, a Class A bumiputra contractor from Sarawak, to finish the project by late November next year.

“The company was awarded the contract with a value of RM42.05mil and given possession of the site on May 27.

The unfinished road structures at the Teluk Kumbar-Pekan Genting road will be finally completed by a newly appointed contractor by November 2010.

“The project was about 76% complete before it was abandoned. We have about 24% to go and under the contract with the new developer, work has to be completed within 78 weeks,” Lim said.

Asked why the completion of the project was projected so late despite more than three quarters of it being finished, Lim said the developer had to set up the basic infrastructure for work to proceed.

“The contractor will have to start anew in terms of work facilities as the ones that were there before had either been demolished, removed or stolen.

“They will have to do everything from setting up the official command post, installing a telephone line, making sure there is an adequate electricity and water supply and so on.

“It will take one to two months to have the work in full swing so the time frame in the contract allows for that,” he said.

An unfinished bridge, one of six to be built under the RM57mil Teluk Kumbar-Pekan Genting road straightening and widening project, will be finally completed by a newly appointed contractor.

The road straightening and widening project is slotted under Package 2B of a three-package project to straighten and improve the road between Bayan Lepas and Balik Pulau.

It commenced in April 2005 and was originally scheduled for completion in April 2007 but was abandoned in May last year after several extensions of the deadline.

The project, which is deemed to be crucial for positive development of the Balik Pulau area, involves the building of six bridges to cut off road bends that will make journeys to Penang island’s southwest area both safer and shorter.

“The construction of the road will shorten the drive (from Bayan Lepas to Balik Pulau) by about 10 minutes.

“The journey will also be cut down from 4.5km to 3.3km in distance. The road is very important for Balik Pulau’s growth and to uplift the surrounding areas,” Lim said.

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