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Monday, March 31, 2008

Major highways help draw buyers to second-tier cities

The well planned community development of Setia Eco Park in Shah Alam

GREATER accessibility through major highways has contributed to the rapid growth of Klang-Shah Alam corridor in the past decade.

Reapfield Properties Sdn Bhd president David Ong said four major highways – North Klang Valley Expressway (NKVE), North-South Expressway Central Link, Shapadu Highway and Federal Highway connects the second-tiered cities to city centre.

With the opening of these highways in Klang-Shah Alam corridor, new townships development was further extended with the infrastructure in the surrounding areas.

Ong said NKVE is a 35km expressway that runs between Jalan Duta in Kuala Lumpur (KL) and Bukit Raja, which is a new industrial and urban area in Klang.

“NKVE is a heavily utilised route for residents in Damasara, KL, Klang Petaling Jaya, Subang and Sungai Buloh,” he said.

Meanwhile, the North-South Expressway Central Link, better known as Expressway Lingkaran Tengah (ELITE), is a critical link that connects the north and south with an uninterrupted journey bypassing the congestion in KL, said Ong.

ELITE starts at a new interchange on the existing NKVE near Shah Alam, transverse towards the south through Batu Tiga on Federal Highway Route 2, towards the KL International Airport (KLIA) in Sepang.

It continued towards the east to connect with the existing North-South Expressway that is about 6km at the north of existing Nilai interchange.

Ong said the 63km expressway, which connects NKVE in Shah Alam to ELITE at the Nilai North interchange, was a popular route for travellers heading to KLIA and the Sepang F1 circuit.

Additionally, Shapadu Highway, or North Klang Straits Bypass Highway, is a new 17.5km dual carriageway that linked North Port to Bukit Raja and connects to NKVE, ELITE and Federal Highways Route 2.

Ong said the accessibility to North Port and West Port in Klang would enhance the growth in the area due to the huge upside potential for the two main ports.

“With the Government encouraging foreign direct investment, these ports are expected to increase activities and stir the economy,” he said.

There is also the Federal Highway Route 2, which is a 16km upgraded expressway that connects Batu Tiga in Shah Alam and Sungai Rasa in Klang, he said, adding that it has two toll plazas and connects to Federal Highway.

PPC International Sdn Bhd executive director Thiruselvam Arumugam said travellers would not mind paying the tolls for these highways along Klang-Shah Alam corridors.

Meanwhile, there are three proposed highways around Klang – the South Klang Valley Expressway, West Coast Expressway and Kemuning-Shah Alam Highway, said Ong.

However, the West Coast Expressway, which stretches from Taiping, Perak, to Banting, Selangor, and runs parallel to ELITE, is believed to have been delayed due to the high price tag of some RM3.1bil for construction, he said.

By The Star (by Shannen Wong)

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