Update: Sultan Ibrahim of Johor explains why he took the initiative to drive the last KTM train out of Singapore!
TRANSIT took note of more articles about the closure of Tg. Pagar railway station (and Bukit Timah – why does everyone forget Bukit Timah) and the effective withdrawal of KTM train service from Singapore.
On 30 June 2011, we invited our readers to share their memories of travel to/from Tg. Pagar and Bukit Timah railway stations.
The last Kuala Lumpur-Singapore train, Ekspres Sinaran, which left KL Sentral at 9am, reached Tanjong Pagar at 6pm, while the last north-bound passenger train, Ekspres Senandung Sutera, departed Tanjong Pagar at 10pm.
1. Article: Close shave for six schoolgirls (NST, 18 June 2011) – Six secondary school students in Georgetown had a close shave yesterday after the school bus they were in overturned in Jalan Mount Erskine.
[TRANSIT: So wait, now you like electric motorcycles?]
3. Article: Taiwan high speed rail ‘sinking’ (APF, 14 June 2011) – Along a stretch of rail in central Taiwan, the soil has subsided due to excessive draining of ground waters, and the limit of what is considered safe is approaching, said Lee Hong-yuan, head of the Public Construction Commission.
4. Article: Reining in the trains (The Star, 18 June 2011) – Chan How Ban’s column on China focuses on High Speed Rail, including government plans to reduce service speeds on the Beijing-Shanghai high speed rail from 350km/h to 300 km/h to reduce operational costs. There will also be a service operating at 250km/h to show respect for those who want a slower pace.
[TRANSIT: If 250km/h is showing respect for those who want a slower pace, then KTMB is probably one of the most respectful companies in the railway industry.]
9. Artikel: Bas U69 Selalu Lewat (Harian Metro, hb. 14 Jun 2011) – Mohamed Hazlan dari Prasarana / RapidKL membalas surat tentang perkhidmatan bas RapidKL.
10. Article: Cameron Highlands bus crash file with A-G (NST, 14 June 2011 – The report on the Cameron Highlands bus crash has been completed and shared with the Cabinet and is now with the Attorney-General’s Office. However, there is currently no plan to lay charges.
TRANSIT took note of this notice of service termination produced by KTMB with information about the final date of KTM intercity service to Singapore.
The final service will take place on 30 June 2011. From 1 July 2011 all KTM service will stop at JB Sentral with shuttle trains providing service between JB Sentral and Singapore’s Woodlands Checkpoint.
Click here for a larger version of the image above.
The last journey from Tanjong Pagar railway station has caught the attention of the public. We now learn that the Sultan of Johor will be driving the last train out of Singapore.
The Singaporean blog “Good Morning Yesterday” has this interesting post about Tg. Pagar railway station including some excellent old photos.
Are you planning to attend the party at Tg. Pagar railway station? If so, make sure that you buy your ticket (assuming that you can get one) and don’t forget that if you board the last train in Johor you will be passing through two customs checkpoints (Malaysia departure and Singapore entry) and they may not be all interested in allowing you to keep the food & drinks you are carrying.
Update: SPAD CEO Mohd Nor Kamal has responded to the announcement by saying that SPAD has not seen any proposal yet!
TRANSIT took note of a very interesting announcement from down south, where the Chief Executive of the Iskandar Regional Development Authority appeared to announce a 500km MRT project for the region.
Now before any jaws drop down to the floor, stop and think for a minute. MRT is a term that means “mass-rapid transit” meaning, a “rapid transit” service (or combination of “rapid transit” services) that moves a large number (a “mass”) of people.
In other words, in this case “MRT network” could actually mean “Mass(ive) Rapid Transit network” and still be a semi-appropriate use of the term.
KUALA LUMPUR: A plan to build a 500km mass rapid transit (MRT) system has been proposed to improve the connectivity within Iskandar Malaysia, according to Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA) chief executive Ismail Ibrahim.
“The MRT project will be developed in five or six phases. The first phase is expected to be completed by 2020. The announcement will be made by the Prime Minister if the proposal is accepted,” he said at the Invest Malaysia 2011 yesterday.
TRANSIT took note of this news from down south, where the Singapore government has decided to make the KTM station at Tanjong Pagar into a national monument. In addition the smaller station at Bukit Timah will also be preserved.
Singapore makes train station national monument (The Star)
8 April 2011
SINGAPORE : [The] Singapore [government] says it will preserve the 1930s train station as a national monument after Malaysia hands over control of the building later this year.
The Preservation of Monuments Board said Friday that it hasn’t decided if the downtown Tanjong Pagar Railway Station will be open for tours.
The station has Neoclassical and Art-Deco architecture. It features a 72-foot (20-meter) -high ceiling over the central hall and tiled wall murals depicting scenes from Malaya, as Malaysia was known under British rule that ended in 1957.
Singapore joined Malaysia in a union in 1963, but split two years later. Malaysia held on to the station despite the split. The two countries agreed last year to a land swap that gives Singapore control of a railroad and stations that run through the island.
That’s good news for those who are interested in Railway Heritage and Railway Tourism activities. We certainly hope that the station will be opened to tour activities and the stall holders will still manage to get income out of the tourist visits.
The station site would also be a good place for a heritage railway museum, to supplement the Land Transport Gallery at the LTA offices in Little India.
The topic has made the international news with at least 50 stories, including this one from AFP here.
For those who are interested, Singapore’s City Circle Line (CCL or ‘Circle Line’) will open up to passenger service from Dhoby Ghaut to Bartley on 17 April 2010. This will add to the existing Circle Line service from Bartley to Marymount, which was opened earlier.