KUALA LUMPUR – The Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Rail (HSR) service that will run through Melaka has led the state government to plan connectivity projects to link the entire state to the rail network and in the process, open up the state to immense growth and development.
Melaka Chief Minister Datuk Seri Idris Haron said the Barisan Nasional government’s pledge to build a coastal highway from Linggi to Masjid Tanah, Klebang and Teluk Mas formed part of the initiatives to enhance the state’s connectivity.
“This highway will definitely benefit the people of Melaka, especially those near the HSR area, in terms of spillover economic activities through a multitude of brisk development projects,” he said in an interview today.
The Kuala Linggi coastal highway to link Tanah Klebang and Teluk Mas would also be linked to the Banting-Taiping highway.
“Can you imagine development that will be taking place on the left and right-hand side of the coastal highway in Melaka.
“For one thing, there will be an integrated bus terminal housing what is going to be the best building not only in the state, but in the country,” he said.
Idris lauded Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s enthusiasm in pushing the HSR project forward as it would drastically cut the travel time from Melaka to Kuala Lumpur to less than half-an-hour.
“Can you imagine in the future, perhaps in 2025, if you are staying in Melaka (and) you can be in Kuala Lumpur in 25 minutes’ time, (similarly) you are here and 30 minutes later you are in Singapore.
“So, what is stopping you from working in Kuala Lumpur but residing in Melaka, or what stops you from working in Melaka and living in Kuala Lumpur,” he said.
He cited this as the reason for the brisk development taking place around the HSR area, such as around Durian Tunggal, and the appreciation in land prices.
The Chief Minister said it was the connectivity from the HSR station to the city centre, outer city centres and rural areas that was important, for which the state government planned numerous projects via a road system and railway network.
He said Masjid Tanah, Merlimau, Alor Gajah and Jasin are outer city centres, which would be connected by a road system either an inner ring road or outer ring road like in Kuala Lumpur, including the construction of flyovers to overcome signalised junctions.
“The flyovers and the interconnection of the highways would go a long way towards solving the traffic congestion issues,” said Idris
He also said the coastal highway would serve as a catalyst for Melaka’s economic development through the preparation of a comprehensive road management system.
“There are also plans to build a new low-cost carrier airport for Melaka through a public-private partnership as our airport is currently outdated,” Idris added.