Saturday February 9, 2013
MRT Corp, MMC-Gamuda sign RM8.28bil works
By CHOONG EN HAN
PETALING JAYA: The development for the most crucial portion of the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) Sungai Buloh-Kajang Line (SBK) has gained traction with the signing of the RM8.28bil underground works agreement.
This agreement is for the completion of underground works between the SBK line's Semantan North Portal and Maluri South Portal. MRT Corp chief executive officer Datuk Azhar Abdul Hamid said the 9.5km underground section was a very important part of the SBK line as it would serve the busiest and congested parts of Kuala Lumpur.
“When the SBK line becomes operational, important parts of Kuala Lumpur such as Bukit Bintang and the Tun Razak Exchange will be served by Malaysia's most modern public transport system,” he said.
Ten tunnel boring machines will be deployed to excavate the 9.5km underground section of the 51km SBK Line. The section will include seven underground stations, namely KL Sentral, Pasar Seni, Merdeka, Bukit Bintang, Pasar Rakyat, Cochrane and Maluri.Azhar added that he was confident of MMC-Gamuda's experience in handling underground works.
“The joint venture constructed the tunnel for the SMART Project which runs through the same karstic limestone geological formation that the MRT Sungai Buloh-Kajang Line tunnel will have to go through. I believe MMC-Gamuda will use the experience gained and apply the same to the MRT project,” he said.
As the project delivery partner, MMC-Gamuda is entitled to 6% of the entire cost of the KVMRT project as its fee.
The project delivery partner will have to bear cost overrun of the project that exceeds 15%, and is responsible for rolling out the MRT project efficiently in phases as opposed to appointing a turnkey contractor under a design and build model.
The estimated cost of the SBK Line is RM23bil with between 14,000 and 15,000 people involved.
Azhar reportedly said the rolling out of the SBK Line had been without any major hiccups and delay, which he plans to replicate in the subsequent lines although the details are still sketchy.
Phase one of the SBK Line from Sungai Buloh to Semantan will be operational by the end of 2016 while phase two from Semantan to Kajang will be operational by July 2017, allowing trains to run the entire alignment from Sungai Buloh to Kajang.The next focus would be on the annoucement of the second and third lines of the urban rail network.
The rollout of the second and third lines, currently under feasibility studies of the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD), is highly anticipated especially by the construction industry which was boosted by the multi-billion ringgit infrastructure, the most expensive the country has ever undertaken for the benefit of the people.