CM: ART line to be built between Bintulu and Samalaju

Abang Johari delivering his speech during the launch of the Kuching Smart City Masterplan at Wisma Bapa Malaysia today. Screengrab from Ukas livestream today (Oct 5, 2021).

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KUCHING, Oct 5: The Sarawak government will build another Autonomous Rail Transit (ART) line between Bintulu and Samalaju.

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said a public transportation system will be built in Bintulu to cater for the increasing population in Bintulu and the expanding industrial area in Samalaju.

“Once our ART line starts, it will be connected with our smart platform.

“The next one will be in Bintulu because Samalaju is going to expand, Kidurong is going to expand.

“So, we need an ART line between Bintulu and Samalaju for the convenience of our people in terms of mobility and also we have to connect them (to the rail network),” he said during the launch of the Kuching Smart City Masterplan at Wisma Bapa Malaysia here today.

The Sarawak government had announced that the ART system will be built in Kuching.  The first phase will involve the construction of two urban lines at elevated and road level which are the Blue Line (Samarahan Line) from Rembus in Kota Samarahan to Hikmah Exchange, covering a distance of about 27 km with stops at 14 stations; and the Red Line (Serian Line) from Mile 12 Kuching-Serian Road to The Isthmus, covering a distance of about 23.4 km with stops at 13 stations.

On the Kuching Smart City Masterplan, Abang Johari said the Sarawak Multimedia Authority (SMA), the agency tasked to implement the Kuching Smart City Masterplan, has conducted many engagement sessions with the citizens to formulate the masterplan and to derive solutions from it.

He hoped the Kuching Smart City Masterplan will trigger Sarawak’s economy development and at the same time enhance the services from the government to citizens.

Citing a case of bill payment by citizens who were overcharged, Abang Johari said the smart city concept will enable smart devices to link citizens with the provider through an application whereby the problem can be solved immediately.

He explained that the Kuching Smart City Masterplan is about connecting citizens with the State government and for the government to provide better services through upgraded infrastructure.

Abang Johari said the technology for the Kuching Smart City Masterplan will also connect Kuching citizens to other cities, such as Miri.

Before that, SMA general manager Dr Zaidi Razak during his speech said a key concept in the masterplan is the smart city operating system, which aims to deliver various system services to enable the service providers within smart city ecosystem.

He added Kuching Smart City Masterplan mapped out the development of core smart city digital infrastructure platform and essential shared smart city applications.

He explained that government agencies, private sector and the community could then package and deliver their services and products using the shared smart city applications.

Among those present at the launching of Kuching Smart City Masterplan were Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan, Utilities Minister Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi, Local Government and Housing Minister Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian, Dr Zaidi, Sarawak Digital Economy Corporation (SDEC) chief executive officer (CEO) Sudarnoto Osman, Huawei Malaysia CEO Michael Yuan and Centre of Technical Excellence (Centexs) CEO Syeed Mohd Hussein. — DayakDaily