10 things you didn’t know about the MRT

*Source: MRT Corp

Did you know that the Sungai Buloh MRT depot is the largest train depot in Southeast Asia? 

Yup, we are astounded too! The Sungai Buloh MRT Depot which is roughly the size of 100 football fields was built to cater more than 1 million MRT passengers per day along the Sungai Buloh-Kajang line and the future MRT line 2, which is currently under construction.

There’s a lot more you did not know about the MRT and its spillover effects. Here are a few fun facts and salient points:

1. The MRT train was designed by the same company whose clients include Microsoft, Starbucks & Coca Cola

Ever wondered who were the brains behind the design of the MRT trains? Malaysia’s newest transit coaches were conceptualised by BMW Group Designworks USA,  a global design consultancy based in Newbury Park, California, the USA and were engineered by Siemens AG.

2. MRT 2 will incorporate a Zen theme

Once the Sungai Buloh-Serdang-Putrajaya Line project is completed; there will be 37 stations, of which 26 are elevated and the remaining 11 stations will be built underground. The elevated stations will have a simple and timeless design, banking on the Japanese “Zen” concept. Other design aspects which will be focused on include open space, natural lighting and ventilation as well as natural visual effects via play of lighting and shadows. Meanwhile, each underground station will carry its own individual theme – the proposed designs range from preserving the rustic, reflecting tidal rhythm, promoting well-being and pulse of life.

Compared to its predecessor’s elevated station design, the columns have been pushed to the sides of the station, giving the MRT 2 stations an open and airy feel. *Source: MRT Corp

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3. MRT 1 has contributed RM3-4 bil to Malaysia’s annual income

The MRT is Malaysia’s largest infrastructure project to date and the three lines are expected to create jobs for a whopping 130,000 people.  PEMANDU anticipates the MRT project to create around 20, 000 direct and indirect jobs with a gross national income (GNI) of RM21.3 billion annually by 2020. The Sungai Buloh-Kajang MRT had contributed to an increase in the Gross National Income of between RM3 billion and RM4 billion per annum since 2011. Now that is a lot of jobs!

Construction underway at the Titiwangsa MRT, part of MRT Line 2. *Source: MRT Corp

4. MRT’s Entrepreneurship Programme has yielded 13 new companies

The MRT jointly runs an MRT Young Graduates Entrepreneurship Programme (MYEP) with Perbadanan Usahawan Nasional Bhd (PUNB) and the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) that encourages new entrepreneurs among Bumiputera graduates. MYEP is designed to provide exposure to the best practices in the construction industry. Thus far 14 candidates have graduated from the first phase of MYEP – they subsequently formed 13 companies which were awarded contracts by the Work Package Contractors (WPC) of the MRT Line 1.

Another 60 more young graduates are expected to be selected for the second phase, MYEP 11.

MYEP II will consist of a robust 12-month programme which includes a six-month intensive professional construction industry training sessions by CIDB, 3-month management and motivational training course by PUNB and 3-month site attachment supervised by MRT Corp and its Project Delivery Partner. *Source: MRT Corp.

5. You better be on your best behaviour as each MRT is equipped with 42 CCTVS

To ensure the safety and security of commuters, each train boasts a total of 42 CCTV cameras, installed throughout the four carriage cars. The CCTV cameras which give a real-time view inside and outside of the train, are also used to ensure the efficiency and smoothness of the MRT train daily operation. These cameras are controlled and monitored from the Operation Control Centre (OCC) housed within the Sungai Buloh Depot.

Besides safety, special focus is given to the placing of handrails, fittings and the materials used, as they have to be durable for heavy use and be easily maintained. What’s more, the trains are disabled friendly with special spaces allocated for wheelchairs. *Source: MRT Corp

6. The trains are energy efficient & super comfortable

The new MRT trains are lighter, quieter and greener to boot. The trains are built with sustainable and non-flammable materials. What’s more; they have a high recyclability once they have reached the end of their service life.  Adding on, the air-conditioning and lighting used are highly efficient thus reducing energy consumption.

Besides looking aesthetically pleasing on the outside, the train’s interior design keeps the people in mind by prioritising comfort, practicality and user-friendliness. The interior design is inviting and fresh, incorporating long-lasting and easy to maintain colours with seats in cool blue tones that are light on the eyes.

The MRT trains are designed with “The Guiding Light” theme which represents something strong and solid while also being modern and timeless. The design was inspired by the various beautiful architectural features of Kuala Lumpur, resulting in a sleek and pleasing mien. *Source: MRT Corp

7. Easy crossing between MRT & LRT stations

The MRT commute experience is made convenient for passengers – you can easily traverse from the underground Pasar Seni MRT station to the elevated Pasar Seni LRT station via a linkway system. You can do the same at Merdeka MRT station, which is located underneath Jalan Hang Jebat, adjacent to historical landmarks such as Stadium Negara and Stadium Merdeka and the future KL118 development. This station is connected to the Plaza Rakyat LRT station via a paid-by-paid pedestrian walkway, allowing for a seamless transfer without the need for commuters to go through fare gates or to purchase new tickets.

Feature walls within the Merdeka MRT station and linkway are used to commemorate the declaration of independence and the Rukun Negara. *Source: MRT Corp

8. MRT to contribute RM20 billion per annum in time savings

Sitting out a traffic jam is every KLite’s nightmare. Thousands spend a couple of hours a day stuck in traffic; which is both frustrating and a waste of time. According to MRT Corp, the implementation of the MRT would see 280 million annual person-hours being saved in worker productivity (i.e hours saved from being stuck in traffic jams), translating to RM20 billion per annum in time savings.

The speed of the trains can go up to 100km/h. However, the average speed the trains operate at is 70km/h, which is good enough for us as the end to end journey (Sungai Buloh to Kajang) only takes 88 minutes!

Hop onto the MRT and avoid the daily gridlock in the city! *Source: MRT Corp

9. MRT 2 recently bagged an international award

In October 2017, MRT Corp won an “Advancement in Rail and Transit Category award” at the prestigious 2017 Be Inspired Awards held in Singapore.  Awarded by Bentley Systems Inc, an international infrastructure software development company, the accolade recognises the use of BIM technology in designing and constructing the MRT Sungai Buloh-Serdang-Putrajaya Line. The Be Inspired Awards is held annually to honour extraordinary work by users of Bentley systems in advancing infrastructure design, construction and operations worldwide.

MRT Corp’s CEO, Dato’ Sri Shahril Mokhtar (centre) said that the use of BIM had resulted in greater efficiency and accuracy in the design and construction of the MRT Line 2, which would help greatly in time and cost savings. *Source: MRT Corp

10. Drop by the MRT Information Truck (MIT) for more info & fun games

Are you curious to learn more about the MRT project or perhaps treat your kids to an educational outing? You are in luck as the MRT Information Truck (MIT) is made available by MRT Corp for the public to obtain information about the rail project. First launched in 2012, the current MIT is equipped with information designed to promote the second MRT line, the Sungai Buloh-Serdang-Putrajaya line. In addition to information boards and brochures, the trucks are equipped with an interactive “Hawkeye” which display a 360-degree aerial view of the entire 51km Sungai Buloh-Kajang alignment.

Games are conducted too to engage the public in fun activities. The MIT is located strategically along the SSP Line. and will be moving along the SSP Line; usually around morning and night markets, mosques and other places of worship, schools and educational institutions and public areas.

The MIT operates from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm, Mondays to Fridays and locations can be checked here

Bring the kids along for fun and games on board the MIT. *Source: MRT Corp

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