Cost of rail projects may top RM50bil? Probably, says TRANSIT

TRANSIT took note of this article in the Business section of the Star Newspaper, which claims that the combined cost of the LRT + MRT proposals could top RM50 billion.

TRANSIT believes that this number is a gross underestimate – especially since the cost of constructing an MRT would be approximately RM300-350million per km (above ground) and perhaps RM450-500 million per km (underground).

And from what TRANSIT is hearing, a significant portion of these 3 lines would be built underground!

Cost of rail projects may top RM50bil (The Star)

Friday June 18, 2010

The figure is inclusive of LRT extension and proposed MRT

PETALING JAYA: The total bill for rail-based public transport improvements in the Klang Valley, including the ambitious mass rapid transit (MRT), could top RM50bil, reliable sources said.

The RM50bil is inclusive of the confirmed RM7bil light rail transit (LRT) extension projects. The other RM43bil is for the recently proposed MRT project.

Sources said that of the RM43bil, RM36bil was for the construction (including tunnelling works) and design of the MRT, RM2bil for land acquisition, RM3bil for rolling stock and RM2bil for developing an underground commercial space.

Rolling stock comprises all the vehicles that move on a railway.

Graphic showing a possible breakdown of costs for the proposed rail network for the Klang Valley - courtesy of Star Business.

Gamuda Bhd and MMC Corp Bhd presented a joint MRT proposal to the Government in January.“The proposal now is at the National Economic Action Council level and is expected to be presented to the Cabinet in two to three weeks.

“The MRT proposal network has three major lines or routes from Damansara to Serdang and Kepong to Cheras – where both lines will converge in the middle of the city centre.

“Additionally, there will also be a crucial line that will tie up all the network connectivity circling the city centre,” the sources told StarBiz.

City centre covers important areas such as Kuala Lumpur City Centre, Platinum Felda, Pasar Rakyat and Raja Chulan.

[TRANSIT: Basically, the “City Centre” as described above is actually the Golden Triangle. The circle line will skirt around the City Centre plus Kg. Baru, Sentul, and the Jalan Duta insitutional areas.]

The sources said Kuala Lumpur was lagging behind in terms of rail benchmarking compared with its regional counterparts such as Singapore, Hong Kong and Japan.

“Kuala Lumpur’s rail network is only 15km per one million population, while most other cities are over 40km per one million people.

“Thus, we need another 150km to be at par with the other cities and this is where the proposed MRT system will come in.

“The proposal also indicates the MRT system would result in a three-fold increase in rail network and a five-fold increase in ridership in line with the public transport target of 40% by 2020 from 18% in 2009,” the sources said.

This will translate to two million trips per day in 2020 using the rail network from 400,000 trips per day currently.

During the 10th Malaysia Plan period, the Government will improve the liveability of cities and has identified major initiatives under the national key result areas, particularly to address crime and improve public transportation in urban areas.

The Greater KL has been identified as a new key economic area and initiatives are under way, including the proposed MRT system, to transform it into a leading global city.


Here we go! From 30 billion to 36 billion to 43billion in just a few days. We can only wonder where this train wreck will stop!

3 replies on “Cost of rail projects may top RM50bil? Probably, says TRANSIT”


Thanks for that point. You are correct that “light” refers to the scope of the engineering involved in the construction of a rail line.

At the same time, we expect that it will take time for Malaysians to adopt their concept of LRT & MRT as smaller & larger versions of the same “metro” rail system.

Regards, Moaz for TRANSIT

Now I think they will use the new excuse of price increment for steel 20% to mark up the price and try to earn tonnes of dirty money from this project.

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