High Speed Rail KL – SG has NOT been cancelled. Anyhow the meeting to formally talk about this between our Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Azmin Ali and his Singapore counterpart has not been firmed yet; date wise. He did say however that he had a “positive meeting” with Singapore officials when he went to the city-state recently. What’s even more important to JB is the Rail Transit Link. This is where a 4-kilometre rail line will run into JB from Singapore and will be able to transport 10,000 travellers in one director every hour. Pretty awesome actually when we look at the jams on weekdays and even holidays between JB and SG. A Malay Mail Online report cited Transport Minister Anthony Loke as saying that our Malaysian cabinet has given in-principle approval for the rail project linking Johor Baru in the southernmost tip of the country with Singapore. Details are still being looked at though. Here’s that article in The Star for reference.
This was reported in Straits Times. Transport Minister Anthony Loke said in JB that once the full go-ahead is given, a joint operating company involving Malaysia and Singapore would be set up. He is hopeful that the RTS project would proceed as planned. The RTS is supposed to start operating in 2024. It will be linking the Bukit Chagar station in Johor Baru, near Sentral train station, to the Singapore terminus in Woodlands North. This is where commuters can transfer to the upcoming Thomson-East Coast MRT Line (TEL). He said, “Despite the delay, the RTS project will be completed in six years’ time by 2024.” He also shared that for the delay of two months, no compensation issues would arise because the matter has been communicated to the Singapore side. The joint-venture company has also been been formally set up as at today. The joint-operator would be Singapore’s SMRT and Malaysia’s national rail operator Prasarana Malaysia. Do refer here for the Straits Times article.
Yes, I personally think this RTS is by far more important as a catalyst to JB versus the HSR KL – SG. Especially to the property market because there is now a much better reason to get a home in JB versus renting a room in Singapore just to avoid the morning rush hour on weekdays. Anyhow this would depend on the number of Malaysians working in Singapore currently. According to a number by mothership.sg, as at 2012, there were 400,000 Malaysians working in Singapore. The article here. Assuming just 10 percent of these are renting a room in Singapore today would still be easily a demand of 40,000 homes in JB, whether it’s by renting or through buying one. Many also fail to realise that despite those crazy jams from SG to JB during the holidays, only a small percentage of Singaporeans actually own a car. As for the rest, the option to visit JB easily may soon be made available to them in the future. All the best yeah RTS.
written on 7 Aug 2018
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