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Penang Transport Master Plan

A map of the proposed Penang Transport Master Plan, which includes the Tanjung Tokong Monorail Line (marked in light purple).

The Tanjung Tokong Monorail, under the Penang Transport Master Plan, is a planned 7 kilometre-monorail line linking George Town with its northwestern suburbs of Pulau Tikus and Tanjung Tokong, as well as the nearby tourist attractions such as Gurney Drive[1].

A total of eight stations have been proposed along the seven kilometre route stretching from the George Town city centre to the newly-reclaimed land off the northern coast of the Tanjung Tokong suburb, through Gurney Drive[2][3].

Construction of the Tanjung Tokong Monorail Line is expected to commence after that of the Bayan Lepas LRT Line, owing to the greater priority of the latter line.

Rationale

Traffic congestion at Kelawai Road, George Town, Penang

Traffic congestion along Kelawai Road, just behind Gurney Drive.

The Tanjung Tokong Monorail Line is expected to serve residents within the relatively affluent George Town suburbs of Pulau Tikus and Tanjung Tokong.

Although not as frequent as the more southerly suburbs, traffic congestion does occur, especially around the popular seaside promenade of Gurney Drive.

In addition, the monorail line will benefit tourists and shoppers within Gurney Drive and its two upmarket shopping malls, Gurney Plaza and Gurney Paragon, as well as those heading to other tourist attractions around the suburbs of Pulau Tikus and Tanjung Tokong.

Kuala Lumpur Monorail

An example of a monorail system : the Kuala Lumpur Monorail

As is the case with the Air Itam Monorail, the monorail system was chosen due to a number of factors :

  • The monorail system typically runs on a single railway, unlike the LRT which normally require two or more parallel rails. Therefore, the monorail is better suited to minimise any impact on the highly-urbanised suburbs of Pulau Tikus and Tanjung Tokong, as well as Gurney Drive.
  • Monorails are typically built above ground on elevated railways, thereby minimising space requirements and avoiding the usage of the congested Kelawai Road and Gurney Drive.
  • An elevated monorail system will also minimise the resultant noise.
  • The smaller monorail system reduces capital requirement compared to the larger LRT system.

Alignment

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Gurney, George Town, Penang

Gurney Drive, George Town

Straits Quay, Tanjung Tokong, George Town, Penang

Straits Quay, Tanjung Tokong, George Town

As of April 2016, eight stations have been identified along a 7 kilometre route stretching from the heart of George Town to the newly-reclaimed residential area of Sri Tanjung Pinang within the Tanjung Tokong suburb, via the Pulau Tikus suburb and Gurney Drive[2][3].

Gurney Paragon condominiums, George Town, Penang

Gurney Paragon Twin Condominiums, the second tallest skyscrapers on Penang Island. The Gurney Paragon shopping mall is located in between.

Gurney Plaza, Gurney Drive, George Town, Penang

Gurney Plaza, one of the most famous shopping malls in George Town.

Island Plaza, Tanjung Tokong, George Town, Penang

Island Plaza, Tanjung Tokong, George Town

From east to west :

The proposed KOMTAR Interchange will be built at the former Sia Boey market east of KOMTAR. This is the most important interchange that will connect the monorail line with the other planned rail lines on Penang Island - the Air Itam Monorail, the George Town Tram Line and the Bayan Lepas LRT.

KOMTAR George Town, Penang

The KOMTAR Interchange in the heart of George Town will be built at the former Sia Boey Market east of KOMTAR, and will serve to link the Air Itam and Tanjung Tokong Monorail Lines with the proposed George Town Tram Service and the Bayan Lepas LRT Line.

However, the final alignment of the Tanjung Tokong Monorail Line is still subject to future review, pending on travel demand, capacity, socio-political and socio-economic reception of the proposed system, and development intensity. There are also suggestions to extend the line further west to cover the northwestern-most suburbs (and tourist destinations) of Tanjung Bungah and Batu Ferringhi as well[3].

Current Status

The monorail line is expected to be constructed after the Bayan Lepas LRT Line, which will be built beginning 2018.

References

  1. http://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2015/08/15/trams-making-comeback-under-rm27bil-penang-plan/
  2. 2.0 2.1 http://paultan.org/2016/03/04/penang-public-transport-plan-revealed-lrt-brt-monorail-and-trams-to-connect-island-to-mainland/
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 http://www.penangpropertytalk.com/2016/04/penang-monorail-tanjung-tokong-line/

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