More community buses for Selangor? When and how?

TRANSIT took note of this article which focuses on the discussion of the upcoming Selangor state budget and related public consultations.

In one of the discussions, a proposal was made to expand on community shuttle bus services using the model from Petaling Jaya.

Although the article suggests that the Housing & Local Government Minister Ronnie Liu was in favour of the idea, there remain many questions about whether or not the Selangor government will be able to dvelop the proper administrative structures and put the proper steps into motion to make this happen.

Frankly based on what little we have see from the Selangor government over the past 3 years, we do not know what to expect.

Community bus service for other councils (The Star)
Wednesday June 29, 2011
By CHRISTINA LOW

MORE local councils in Selangor may have to introduce community buses to curb traffic congestion in their areas, state Housing and Local Government Committee chairman Ronnie Liu said.

Liu said local councils must be more creative in solving the prevailing problem that affected the people.

One suggestion at the Selangor Budget Dialogue for Public Transportation and Traffic Congestion within Local Council areas was to implement the community bus system.

Free service: The PJ community bus has been operating since August 2008 and can accommodate 33 passengers. Image courtesy of The Star.


During the session which was led by traffic consultant Goh Bok Yen, where Liu was a moderator, various ideas were put forward but as a short-term measure, community buses which are being used by Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) received good response.

The community bus system in MBPJ was introduced in 2008 and has 79 stops on its route covering hospitals, schools, universities, public libraries, parks and markets.

Liu said the same system should be used by the councils in Subang Jaya, Kajang and Sungai Buloh to overcome traffic congestion.

Other solutions include using bicycles as an alternative mode of transport.

This would be ideal for those who do not need to travel very far.

Liu said the state might also make it mandatory for developers at new townships to build proper walkways.

“We feel that people’s behaviour will change when they see a nice and safe path for them to walk from one point to another.

“Later, they may also be spurred to leave their cars at home and walk,” he said.

All ideas and suggestions brought up at the session would be sent to Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim for approval before the state’s 2012 budget is finalised.

TRANSIT Says:

We have tried our level best to do what we can with local governments as well as with the Selangor government to get more proactive behaviour and support for local, community based transport.

Even before TRANSIT was created, some of our members were working on community shuttle bus initiatives in Shah Alam and Subang Jaya. We have given feedback to numerous persons of interest in the Selangor Government, up to and including the Menteri Besar.

But nothing has happened. And in the meantime, some local councils have taken the initiatives but they have not been able to put the proper structure in place that will make public transport easy and effective.

In other words, in the absence of clear direction from the State Government, those local councils that wish to do nothing, are doing nothing, while those councils that wish to take action are doing the best they can – but ultimately accomplishing little.

The only way to get the attention of the State Exco and the Menteri Besar and to change Selangor Government policy to make it more favourable towards public transport is for you and I to contact our local ADUN and local councils and tell them that we want better policy making and more support for public transport.

TRANSIT’s Specific Talking Points are:

  1. Create public transport officers at each of the 12 local councils in Selangor. These public transport officers will come together to become the Selangor Public Transport Caucus, which will discuss and evaluate solutions for public transport, presenting these evaluations to the Selangor Transport Council. Members of the Public Transport Caucus would also take decisions to their local councils and help smooth through the implementation of these decisions.
  2. The Selangor Transport Council would be modeled after the Penang Transport Council. It would be an adminsitrative Think Tank that would also bring together all 4 stakeholder groups in public transport. The Transport Council would be responsible for organizing and managing public transport within the state.
  3. Bus, minibus/taxivan, and taxi operators would be hired by the Selangor Transport Council to provide public transport services, especially local services;
  4. A system of public transport hubs would be placed throughout our communities, ensuring that everyone would have access to affordable public transport within a reasonable walking distance. These hubs would be monitored by the local councils and use a bus ticket system (for larger hubs served by buses, minibuses/taxivans and taxis) or a coupon system (for smaller hubs only served by taxis).
Advertisements

4 thoughts on “More community buses for Selangor? When and how?”

  1. wouldn’t all this be overlapping with the services provided by rapidkl? all this sounds really good, but what use would this kind of service be if is not integrated with rapidkl.

    1. @Sam

      That’s a good question. In most cases, we would prefer to see RapidKL buses go back to the original system with frequent Bas Utama and more Bas Tempatan.

      TRANSIT was concerned back in 2007 when then CEO of Rapid KL Suffian Baharuddin cut back on Tempatan service claiming that people did not like having to change buses.

      Actually, the issue was that RapidKL did not provide bus schedule information and could not coordinate connections between the Bas Tempatan and Bas Utama. Our observations from 2006 and 2007 showed that both Bas Utama and Tempatan were effective, but RapidKL did not offer enough frequent services to make a difference.

      Our proposal for Community Shuttle Buses, Minibuses/Taxivans and community taxi services would complement the main RapidKL bus services, rather than compete with them, and help to bring people out of their housing estates without having to drive or negotiate with taxi driving sharks.

      Regards, Moaz for TRANSIT

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s