Covered walkways at LRT stations ready by year-end?

TRANSIT noted this article in the NST today, mentioning that the first phase of the covered walkways project would be completed by the end of 2010.

Covered walkways at LRT stations ready by year-end
2010/06/29
By Nuradzimmah Daim

KUALA LUMPUR: Construction on the elevated and covered pedestrian walkways, which will connect some light-rail and monorail stations (LRT) in the city, are expected to start soon and will be completed by year-end.

An artist impression of the pedestrian walkway linking Putra World Trade Centre LRT station to Putra bus station. Image courtesy of Streets-NST

The LRT stations are Plaza Rakyat, Sultan Ismail, Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC), Bandaraya and Pasar Seni, and the Hang Tuah monorail station.

City Hall road transport department director Dr Leong Siew Mun said Syarikat Prasarana Negara Bhd, which runs the light rail services, had already appointed the contractors for the project which involves an integrated network system of linking pedestrian walkways to LRT and monorail stations.

“The elevated and covered walkways will connect the stations at Plaza Rakyat to the Cahaya Suria Building in Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lock; PWTC to Putra bus station; Sultan Ismail to Medan Tuanku monorail station; and Bandaraya to City Hall headquarters in Jalan Raja Laut, and Hang Tuah monorail station to Masjid Al-Bukhary,” he said in presentation at the KL Draft Plan 2020 workshop yesterday.

The walkways provide convenience and connectivity and is in line with the safe city concept.

The project is part of the Federal government’s plan to have an extensive network of pedestrian walkways built by private developers so that all buildings in the city centre would be connected in the future.

Leong also said Petronas had proposed a pedestrian bridge from Hotel Impiana KLCC to Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre including Impiana KLCC to Menara Perak; Kompleks Dayabumi; TA Properties to Matic; and the Ampang Park LRT station to Masjid As-Syakirin KLCC.

An artist impression of the pedestrian walkway connecting Impiana Hotel KLCC to Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre. Image courtesy of Streets-NST

Draft plan consultant, AJM Planning and Urban Design Group Sdn Bhd’s managing director Norliza Hashim said a total of 143km interconnected pedestrian network would be achieved in the city centre by 2020.

She said the pedestrian network would be categorised into six groups, namely, the major spine which is from Dataran Merdeka to the Chow Kit monorail station (2.5km), primary pedestrian routes, secondary pedestrian routes, tertiary pedestrian routes, riverside corridor and the heritage trail.

Norliza also pointed out the problems faced by local authorities after the projects were completed including poor maintenance, design failure, poor lighting, and lack of shady trees and security.

The two-day workshop, which ended yesterday, was aimed at explaining the draft plan to residents’ associations.

Among the issues brought up were open spaces, petty traders and hawkers, and landscape and public park maintenance.

TRANSIT Says:

We find the proposal for walkways to be relatively interesting and in some cases, quite unnecessary.

At the same time, having been stuck in the rain on more than one occasion while waiting for an extra-long traffic light, we have often wished that we could just cross the intersection easily.

Pedestrian walkways are not necessarily pedestrian-friendly. In fact, they are more of a protective action than anything else. In a way, you could say that they are similar to putting air bags in a car but giving the driver no training to drive properly.

It would be nice if walkways were not needed and the streets were just pedestrian friendly – wide pavements that are unblocked, with proper line of sight and clear signage.

So while we are pleased to know that the walkways are being built, we would rather see more attention being paid to making the pedestrian environment of KL that much more friendly and welcoming.

There are some attractive, walkable areas in KL, but these are literally few, and far-between.

But KL-ites and tourists do keep on walking – and they should be commended for doing so.

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4 thoughts on “Covered walkways at LRT stations ready by year-end?”

  1. Covered walkways are a great idea where they truly connect the public transport services BUT the problem with many existing covered walkways is the space is so often blocked by parked cycles, motorcycles and hawkers selling food or broadband subscription. For example Bandar Tasik Selatan, Masjid Jamek, Hang Tuah LRT to Monorail, Ampang Terminal and so on.
    Then look at the parked taxis and motorbikes on the footway between KL Sentral and the Monorail. The list is endless. Build them but enforce the pedestrian only usage.

    1. Barry

      Thanks for your comment. You are correct about illegal hawkers, parked cycles, etc. blocking the covered walkways.

      The irony is that, at the recent DBKL workshops, one member of the Sri Petaling Residents’ Association said, repeatedly, that these walkways should have shops, kiosks etc.

      Clearly he does not intend to use these walkways – or perhaps he was being sarcastic and it was lost on us.

      We at TRANSIT certainly hope that walkways will be kept to a minimum in KL – as you said, only to provide links to and from LRT / MRT stations as well as to bypass congested roads, or to cross high speed roads, and intersections with very slow traffic lights like Jalan Hang Tuah / Jalan Pudu.

      Regards, Moaz for TRANSIT

  2. “… the problems faced by local authorities after the projects were completed including poor maintenance, design failure, poor lighting, and lack of shady trees and security.”

    Since they have identified the resultant problems from the walkways, what rectification do they propose in their plan to overcome them? Being the president of the Malaysian Institute of Planners, Norliza can’t just let the walkway be built first and deal with the problems later as a lot of the problems are due to the design of the walkway. I hope there is more to what was reported.

  3. Calgary +15 is a great example. you can go anywhere in the city even if its freezing cold (think thunderstorm for us), and I think its a design requirement for buildings to have these connecting bridges from one building to another, so probably maintenance is by building owners vs city hall(?). en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%2B15

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