Penang Budget 2011 – what do you think?

Earlier this month, Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng read the Penang Budget 2011. Copies of the Budget Speech are available in BM / Chinese.

TRANSIT took note of some interesting content on pages 14-16, sections 32-35, which discuss the following:

  • Penang Transport Master Plan;
  • Water Taxi Service integrated with existing taxi and public transport;
  • Cooperation between the Penang Government and RapidPenang to construct additional terminals for service between Prai / Prov. Wellesley and the Bayan Lepas Free Trade Zone as well as the [Penang] Bridge Express Shuttle Transit (BEST);
  • introducing a meter and coupon system to improve the taxi service (once approval from the Federal Government is secured).

The actual BM text can be seen after the jump:

32. Bagi menambahbaik sistem pengangkutan dan pengurusan lalulintas ke arah yang lebih efisien, bersepadu dan mampan Kerajaan Negeri telah memperuntukkan RM2 juta untuk pelaksanaan Kajian Pelan Induk Pengangkutan dan Pengurusan Lalu lintas Negeri Pulau Pinang (Penang Transport Master Plan).

33. Kajian Pelan Induk Pengangkutan dan Pengurusan Lalu Lintas Negeri Pulau Pinang ini juga akan meneliti dengan lebih mendalam mod-mod pengangkutan air yang dilihat berpotensi untuk dijadikan alternatif kepada sistem pengangkutan awam darat sedia ada dalam penyelesaian isu kesesakan lalu lintas di negeri ini. Dalam hal ini, Kerajaan Negeri bekerjasama dengan Pihak Berkuasa Pelaksanaan Koridor Utara untuk mengintegrasikan Kajian Perkhidmatan Teksi Air dalam kajian ini agar perkhidmatan teksi air yang akan dilaksanakan kelak benar-benar memberi impak kepada sistem pengangkutan awam di negeri ini.

34. Kerajaan Negeri juga bekerjasama dengan Rapid Penang Sdn Bhd dalam mempertingkatkan perkhidmatan bas di Pulau Pinang untuk kebaikan rakyat jelata. Rapid Penang telah mencadangkan
untuk melaksanakan sistem Park and Ride, di mana hub /terminal akan disediakan di beberapa kawasan di Seberang Perai. Pekerja-pekerja di Free Trade Zone (FTZ) dan Seberang Perai adalah dicadangkan meletakkan kenderaan mereka di hub /terminal tersebut dan mengambil bas shuttle secara percuma yang disediakan oleh Rapid Penang. Kos membiayai bas shuttle ini dari Seberang Perai ke Bayan Lepas adalah RM600,000.00 untuk 6 bulan. Tujuan utama pelaksanaan sistem Park and Ride adalah untuk mempromosikan pengangkutan awam kepada masyarakat dan menggalakkan pekerja-pekerja di FTZ Bayan Lepas menggunakan perkhidmatan bas yang dapat mengurangkan kesesakan jalan raya terutamanya Jambatan Pulau Pinang. Perbelanjaan RM600,000.00 untuk 6 bulan membiayai kos operasi Rapid Penang bagi mempromosikan dan menggalakkan sistem BEST (Bridge Express Shuttle Transit) ini akan mengurangkan 2,000 – 3,000 buah kenderaan sehari.

35. Bagi menambahbaikan perkhidmatan teksi pula, Kerajaan Negeri masih menunggu kelulusan daripada Kerajaan Persekutuan supaya sistem kupon dan sistem meter dapat dilaksanakan dengan serentak bagi meningkatkan keberkesanan dan imej perkhidmatan teksi.

TRANSIT Says:

After the comments by Dr. Choong of CEPAT (who is a member of the Penang Transport Council) in which he suggested that RapidPenang should be looking at traffic congestion issues (a Transport Council responsibility) rather than buying new double decker buses, we at TRANSIT were interested to see what results would come out of the 2011 Budget.

We are very pleased to read that the state government will be investing a significant amount of money into the supporting the costs, of promoting and operating the public transportation service.

The cooperation between the State Government and RapidPenang is a positive thing to see, and we hope that this bodes well for future cooperation between the Penang Transport Council and RapidPenang and investment in other areas such as bicycle infrastructure and feeder bus services.

We would like very much to see RapidPenang enter a full cooperation agreement with the Penang Transport Council to jointly take on the responsibility for improving public transport and reducing traffic congestion on the island, by improving the use of public transport assets and increasing the use of active transport methods (walking, cycling, trishaw).

What would you like to see towards improving public transport and reducing congestion in Penang? Please respond in the comment space below.

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