Kidex brings huge spillover benefits, says concessionaire

KUALA LUMPUR: Despite opposition by some residents in Selangor over the proposed Kinrara-Damansara Expressway (Kidex), the highway operator, Kidex Sdn Bhd, says the project will bring about immense spillover economic benefits to the Petaling Jaya-Puchong area.

Chief executive officer Datuk Mohd Nor Idrus gave an assurance that land acquisition for the project would be minimal, saying 90% of the expressway alignment would be on existing roads.

He also said that contrary to allegations, only about 60 lots of residential units would be affected as a result of the construction of the 14.9km super-elevated highway.

Mohd Nor said the RM2.4 billion construction cost of the proposed highway would be borne by the company while the government would contribute with land acquisition.

“This is more of a private financial initiative where the funding comes from us while the government only contributes in terms of land acquisition,” he told Bernama in an interview.

He added that 20% of the project would be funded internally and 80% from loans.

Once completed, the highway would be the country’s second fully-elevated highway, beginning from the North Klang Valley Expressway’s (NKVE) Damansara interchange, passing through five highways before ending somewhere near an army camp in Kinrara, Puchong.

It will then be linked to another planned highway, the Serdang Kinrara Putrajaya Expressway (Skip), which will connect it to Putrajaya, giving an alternative option for road users moving to the administrative centre, Mohd Nor added.

The country’s first fully-elevated highway, the 7.9 km Ampang-Kuala Lumpur Elevated Expressway (Akleh), was completed in 2001 at a cost of RM754 million.

Another project, the partly elevated 18km Duta-Ulu Klang Expressway (Duke) cost RM892 million, excluding the extension second phase project.

Mohd Nor said Kidex would ease the traffic burden by as much as 20% from local roads, 8% each from the Kesas Highway, Bukit Jalil Highway, Federal Highway and Sprint Expressway, as well as 3% from the New Pantai Expressway.

This is in addition to the 20% traffic reduction from the Damansara Puchong Highway, which is currently being used by an average of 130,000 vehicles daily.

He said the highway construction, expected to start in the second or third quarter next year, would take between three to four years to complete.

The highway would consist of three stages of elevation, the lowest at eight metres and the highest at 24m, equivalent to an eight-storey building.

Meanwhile, the Works Ministry in a statement last Friday said it will closely monitor the project, which is now entering the condition precedent stage, while urging all relevant quarters to continue negotiations in an orderly manner without creating any disturbance or untoward incident. — Bernama

This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on May 26, 2014.


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