Source from: New Straits Times, Original Article
KUALA LUMPUR: Those using the Petaling Jaya-bound route of Jalan Semantan can expect delays and diversions as around 1km of the crucial artery feeding traffic out of the city will be closed to vehicles for a year starting Monday.
City Hall’s announcement on the closure of the stretch on Jalan Semantan and Jalan Beringin, heading to Bangsar and Petaling Jaya yesterday, sent shock waves among residents.
Non-governmental organisation Selamatkan KL acting chairman Datuk M. Ali asked the authorities how it planned to mitigate the expected gridlock.
“It’s going to be hellish as the road feeds thousands of vehicles daily on peak and off-peak hours into numerous areas connected by the Sprint, LDP (Damansara-Puchong Expressway) and NKVE (New Klang Valley Expressway) highways.
“This covers housing areas, such as Taman Tun Dr Ismail, Mont Kiara, Sri Hartamas, Kepong and Sungai Buloh, as well as Kelana Jaya, Sunway and Puchong,” Ali told the New Straits Times.
City Hall Corporate Planning Department director Khairul Azmir Ahmad said the closure was to facilitate the construction of the RM211.75 million Daman-sara-Semantan Highway.
The route to Pusat Bandar Damansara is to be diverted through Jalan Beringin, while Jalan Damansuria’s access to Jalan Semantan will be blocked off due to the closure.
Ali said residents were especially disappointed as they were told during a briefing on May 1 last year by Kuala Lumpur Mayor Datuk Seri Nor Hisham Ahmad Dahlan that the project was to be put on hold until the detailed Traffic and Social impact assessment reports were submitted to residents.
“However, there was only silence after that. In the middle of last year, they (City Hall) started putting up hoarding and clearing the roads affected.
“This was followed by road closures and diversions for construction vehicles and materials.”
He said that on Jan 15 a group of residents met Nor Hisham to submit a memorandum on their objection to the project.
“His officers were directed to get back to us, but we’ve heard nothing since then before this announcement.”
The three-lane road will stretch 1.34km from the Sprint Highway-Jalan Maarof interchange to the Sprint Highway-Jalan Semantan interchange as a means to address the congestion in Jalan Johar and Jalan Beringin.
Last year, residents questioned the credibility of the traffic impact assessment (TIA) report on the Jalan Damansara-Semantan Highway project after City Hall held a briefing with them over it.
They objected to the project on grounds that the 2018 TIA report was too narrow and that it had failed to take into account the impact on the greater Damansara area.
However, at the briefing, Pavilion Damansara Heights project traffic consultant Dr Tai Tuck Leong said the study concluded that the highway would ease congestion in the area.
He said the percentage of traffic on Jalan Beringin and Jalan Johar would be reduced by 47 per cent upon the project’s completion.
WCT Sdn Bhd, which was awarded the contract, is undertaking the project while the construction cost is being shared by City Hall, Pavilion and UKAS (Public-Private Partnership Unit).
According to previous reports, City Hall is to contribute RM130 million to the cost.
Segambut member of parliament Hannah Yeoh, who attended the dialogue, said City Hall had failed to clarify the cost and the traffic impact of the elevated highway project in its briefing.
For more information on the road closure, contact the Civil Engineering Department at 03-2617 9000 or SPRINT at 03-7424 7333.