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HSR back on track, but may feature slower trains to reduce cost

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HSR back on track, but may feature slower trains to reduce cost Others


PUTRAJAYA: The government is looking to scale down the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail (HSR) project, including possibly reducing the speed of the trains in a bid to keep costs low.
 
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the government is currently in the midst of a project review exercise, and scaling down the project might keep costs at a manageable level.
 
Speaking to reporters at the launch of the Bandar Malaysia project today, he noted that the HSR is an expensive project.
 
“The HSR will go ahead, but we will have to find out what speed (of the train) we should have.
 
“It is not necessary for it to run 400 kilometres per hour (km/h).
''So we will look into what is more suitable for the project. We would like to spend less money. Maybe we can scale down and do some adjustments in order to reduce the cost.
 
''Maybe less speed (of HSR) will contribute to the reduction of the cost,'' he said.
 
The HSR was initially announced by the previous government on Sept 2010, and was expected to be completed by 2026. However, following the 14th general election, Dr Mahathir announced that the project would be scrapped due to its high cost.
 
On Sept 5, 2018, Singapore agreed to suspend the construction of the project until the end of May 2020. As a result of Malaysia’s request for the deferment, it agreed to pay an abortive cost of S$15 million (RM45.6 million) to Singapore by Jan 31 of this year.
 
Dr Mahathir had later announced that HSR operations would start in Jan 2031.
 
The HSR, spanning 350 km, was targeted to reduce travel time between KL and Singapore to 90 minutes. The service is expected to start from Bandar Malaysia and end at Jurong East in Singapore.


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