KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 3 –Having to put up with traffic congestion for more than one hour daily just to get to one’s workplace which may be merely 20 kilometres away can be quite frustrating.
Hence why the mass rapid transit (MRT) Sungai Buloh-Kajang (SBK) line which became fully operational following the opening on July 17 of the second phase of the project was a welcome alternative particularly for the working community.
Aside from saving travelling time and avoiding traffic congestion, city dwellers could also minimise petrol expenses by switching to MRT as their main mode of transport.
Human Resource executive officer Rachel Wong, 26, said she no longer needed to drive as early as 6 am from Kota Damansara to her workplace in KLCC after opting to travel by MRT.
“Previously I estimated that I had to set off two hours earlier in order to reach the office before 8 am.
“But now I don’t have to do that as I can just walk to Mutiara Damansara station to take the MRT to KL Sentral and from there I’ll take the LRT to KLCC which takes less than an hour,” she told Bernama.
Nurse Kim Ong, 33, said the MRT station located merely about one kilometre from her house in Taman Tun Dr Ismail (TTDI) made it easy for her to reach her workplace at Sungai Buloh Hospital.
“Previously I had to drive to Kepong KTM station to get to Sungai Buloh station before taking a bus or taxi to the hospital.
“Now I just go on foot to TTDI station, get on the MRT to Sungai Buloh directly, which takes about 40 minutes, and then take the shuttle bus to Sungai Buloh hospital,” she said.
Customer Service officer Nor Halimatun Othman, 45, who stays in Bandar Tun Hussein Onn, said ever since she started using the MRT service on July 17, arriving late at her workplace in Bukit Bintang was no longer a worry.
“I used to spend up to RM700 every month for petrol excluding toll and parking payments but now I only have to take the MRT to reach my workplace everyday without driving and having to put up with traffic congestion,” she said.
She said the MRT service was so convenient that she could set aside the hassle of having to drive to work or do her shopping.
“There is a 50 per cent discount for all public transport services under Rapid KL so this means we pay less for fares while travelling conveniently and comfortably,? she said.
Meanwhile, graphic designer A. Ganesh, 29, said since the launch of the MRT SBK line, traffic congestion had visibly decreased particularly around tourist spots and shopping centres.
“The traffic congestion used to be so chronic and could stretch to two hours particularly during peak hours in the morning and evening, but now city dwellers have more alternatives in terms of public transport.
“There are now more parking spaces at shopping centres. Usually during weekends when everybody wants to go shopping, parking space is so limited,” he said.
The second phase of the MRT Semantan-Kajang line completes the Sungai Buloh-Kajang (SBK) alignment stretching 51 kilometres.
The entire 51km-line from Sungai Buloh to Kajang serves 31 stations including seven underground; the MRT Sungai Buloh-Kajang line integrates with the light rail transit (LRT), Monorail and KTM commuter services.
The first phase involving the Sungai Buloh-Semantan line stretching 21 kilometres began operating on Dec 16 last year.