Update: Prasarana says there is no disruption of LRT or monorail services planned! [TRANSIT: We say planned because during the previous march LRT services were shut down when problems occurred at Dataran Merdeka. So the disruptions could happen.]
Due to continuous scaremongering over the BERSIH 2.0 march, SPAD has issued an official announcement on the temporary change in final destinations of express and stage buses in Kuala Lumpur.
Date : Saturday, 9 July 2011
Sanctioned Hours: 0001 to 2200 Hrs
Express buses will shift to these stations:
- Puduraya and Pekeliling bound express buses (except KL-Seremban route) will shift temporarily to Hentian Duta.
- Hentian Putra (PWTC) and KL-Seremban express buses will shift temporarily to Terminal Bersepadu Selatan (Bandar Tasik Selatan)
Stage buses will stop at these rail stations:
- Titiwangsa – Buses from Jalan Semarak, Jalan Setapak/Genting Kelang, Jalan Ipoh, Jalan Kuching and Jalan Duta
- Dato Keramat – Buses from Jalan Ampang
- Maluri – Buses from Jalan Kg. Pandan, Jalan Cheras
- KL Sentral Monorail – Buses from Federal Highway (to use Jalan Bangsar – Jalan Travers – Jalan Tun Sambanthan) and buses from Jalan Damansara
More information here about the closure of Puduraya, Pekeliling and Putra bus stations.
The announcement says that the road closure to the city center is a directive from PDRM, but TRANSIT believes that SPAD could take the extra effort to work with every stage bus operators to determine the exact routes that are affected, and display the temporary adjustments on its website, rather than lumping the route detours according to the names of roads that the buses use to access downtown KL.
It is ironic that in order to ‘protect’ the KL town from the business damaging effects of the Bersih 2.0 rally, it appears that the government is going to allow business to be damaged by creating traffic congestion.
TRANSIT is very unhappy with the road closure decision. The last time we had excessive roadblocks TRANSIT recommended that PDRM allow buses to proceed faster by creating special bus lanes – and it would be far easier and faster for PDRM to inspect 60 passengers on a bus than it would be to inspect 40 cars (each carrying their average 1.28 persons/car) one by one.
It is probably wishful thinking, but we would like to see PDRM just issue a ban for private motor vehicles and create a ‘green transport’ day for Kuala Lumpur. After all, if the government can use its iron fist to clamp down on the constitutional right for peaceful assembly (or perhaps work with marching organizer on participation limit, road closure and marching paths), why can’t it use some common sense to spare one lane for each road for public transport vehicles going into the downtown area so that people can get in and out of the city center quickly (knowing that the road closures will create traffic havoc)?
And why not take the opportunity to see what would happen if stage buses and intra-city buses were diverted to the terminals at the outside of the city? TRANSIT has already said that this needs to happen in the future in order to preserve some of our older bus terminals. Let’s make it happen then.
City police chief Datuk Amar Singh was reported to say that the public are “strongly discouraged” from going into the city on Saturday. TRANSIT is puzzled, as the media had been sensationalising the news that the livelihoods of shopkeepers will be terribly affected by the ‘illegal march’, and the marching organizer had already agreed to conduct the assembly inside a stadium. Surely, the police should have already consulted with business owners before taking such one-handed decision.
The government will do what the government does – but surely there must be some people within the government who realize that with every crisis there is both danger and potential opportunity for good.
Or maybe we are the only ones who see this?