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It’s morning in Kota Bharu. Let’s lunch in Putrajaya. Possible?

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At the moment, it’s not possible to have breakfast at 7am in Kota Bharu with your best friend and then give him a surprise lunch in Putrajaya. Take a look at the image from google map below. The fastest travelling time is 6 hours and 36 minutes and if you prefer to take it slow and easy, it can even be a 7 hours and 42 minutes journey. However, in the future, this is quite possible. Remember the East Coast Rail Line (ECRL)? This is still under construction and based on existing timeline will be ready by December 2026.

Article in themalaysianreserve.com The government has approved the construction of the East Coast Rail Link’s (ECRL) Section A, a 210.4km realignment stretching from Kota Baru, Kelantan, to Dungun, Terengganu. Malaysia Rail Link Sdn Bhd (MRL) said, “The approval to the ECRL Railway Scheme for Section A would include, among others, the final alignment route, location of passenger or freight stations and the number of lots to be under land acquisition for the Kota Baru-Dungun stretch.”

“The ECRL will now have six stations under Section A consisting of Kota Baru and Pasir Puteh in Kelantan, Jerteh, Bandar Permaisuri, Kuala Terengganu, and Dungun in Terengganu. The progress of the ECRL project was slightly ahead of schedule when the MCO was implemented on March 18.” ECRL is a 640km project divided into three sections namely Section A, Section B (Dungun-Mentakab, Pahang) and Section C (Mentakab-Port Klang, Selangor), which is scheduled for completion by December 2026. It is expected to reduce the travel time between Kota Baru and Putrajaya to approximately four hours. Please read full Article in themalaysianreserve.com

You can start planning for that surprise lunch already. I do think the ECRL brings a lot of economic benefits to all the towns it passes along the 640km route. Rail lines are a lot cheaper both to build and operate and let’s have the whole Malaysia linked and later on all the way to Singapore too. Too bad that the High Speed Rail KL – SG is delayed. Else, it would have been completed at almost the same time as ECRL too. Happy driving, for now.

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