Making more sense and cents with the RTS design

I personally think a good design is something simple and long lasting. Simple as in usable and not expensive to do. Long lasting as in durability, ease of maintenance and the design does not become an eyesore in the future. I think we have seen too many designs which looked grand, costs a lot to build and starts deteriorating within a few years due to it being tough to maintain and soon becomes an eyesore. Yea, lots of good examples yeah? First class infrastructure and third class maintenance? Unfortunately,it has rear its ugly head just recently when the MRT SBK was fully operational. Coming back to something much more important to two countries, the Rapid Transit System connecting Iskandar and Singapore. This was an earlier article. I hope the Rapid Transit System (RTS) becomes a reality earlier than the proposed 2024. 

Reported in many media was the reservation of the Sultan of Johor with the proposed design of the Rapid Transit System (RTS) rail track linking Singapore and Johor Baru in Malaysia. The full article in New Straits Times (NST) here. Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar said that while he welcomed the project, he disagreed with the curve-shaped design of the track and the 30-metre elevation above water in the middle section. The current design would disrupt the city skyline along the Johor Straits. The Sultan said, “We are talking about a permanent fixture here. Go back to the drawing board and review the overall plan.” He then said something which I think is extremely important. He said, “Whatever (new plan) is presented to me, it will have to be logical, economical and sustainable for the benefit of not only Johoreans but all Malaysians and Singaporeans.” He said that the current proposed curved design is impractical and costly. (Do note that when something is costly, the ones who would bear the cost in the end would be the users, in this case Johoreans and Singaporeans who do not drive)

Regardless of who said it, when it involves something as fundamental as sense and cents, it’s time to do more research. Logically, the design should be as simple as possible. This will not just make sense but also saves a lot of cents too. If the fare is not competitive or affordable, the number of people taking it would be low. Soon, the maintenance suffers because of a lack of funds from the tickets. In the end, the project fails. In order for the fare to be affordable, the construction cost would have to be pushed to as low as possible in the first place. Thank you Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar. I hope the right people takes note of your views. I have done my small part to tell more people too. Cheers.

written on 10 Aug 2017

Next suggested article: Is Iskandar getting better? Or worse? Media reports 

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