IPOH: The Perak government has received a proposal for the construction of a highway from Gopeng to Kuala Kangsar which bypasses the Menora Tunnel on the North-South Expressway which could reduce the number of accidents in the state.
Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Saarani Mohamad said the state government supports the private sector project involving a 64km route from Gopeng exit to Siputeh linked to Kuala Kangsar, which has also received the green light from the Cabinet.
"The distance using this road is slightly longer but it will take less time without going through the hill. The state government supports the proposal as it is a private finance initiative (PFI) and will not use government funds.
"In one year, the company has succeeded in meeting the Public Works Department and the Public Private Partnership Unit (Ukas) for further discussion.
"The company has received approval from the government in April and will take two years for land acquisition as well as to obtain a financier," he said when met by reporters at a Hari Raya Aidilfitri gathering organised by the Malay Hawkers and Petty Traders Association (PPPKM) here today.
Saarani said it is hoped the project will reduce accidents at the hotspot as the proposed route is flat and could ease traffic congestion.
In an accident on Wednesday night, five Universiti Sultan Azlan Shah students were killed when their car burst into flames after an accident involving two other lorries at KM245.2 of the North-South Expressway northbound near Kuala Kangsar.
Earlier, Saarani approved an allocation of RM250,000 to PPPKM to enable the association improve the business of its members.
"As hawkers were affected during the Covid-19 pandemic, I approved an allocation of RM200,000 to PPPKM, in which RM40,000 is for the parent association here and RM10,000 to each of 16 districts as well as an additional RM50,000 is provided in the hope they can manage it better, " he said.