MANJUNG: The new West Coast Expressway (WCE) stretch between Lekir to Changkat Chermin and Changkat Chermin to Beruas respectively, will be opened to motorists at the end of this month.
WCE Sdn Bhd managing director Datuk Neoh Soon Hiong said the 45km toll-free stretch designated as section 9 and 10 of the expressway, would be the second stretch to be opened to motorists.
“Both sections should have been opened last month, however, we did not receive a green light from the Malaysian Highway Authority (MHA) to open the sections.
“We had completed both sections in August but there were procedures that needed to be taken including inspection, gazettement...all these things take time.
“Upon completion, we submitted and notified the matter to MHA (Malaysian Highway Authority) and they will come back to us with further details. We can’t rush it, we need to make sure the safety aspects are all taken cared of,” he said.
Section 9 will have four toll plazas including in Kampung Lekir, Sitiawan North and Changkat Jering while Section 10 will have one toll plaza in Beruas.
He added that the construction of the Rest and Service Area (R&R) in Section 9 had yet to start and would kick-off soon.
Neoh said this after a briefing on the opening of the Section 9 and Section 10 stretch to media members at the Perak WCE Management Office in Ayer Tawar, near, here today.
On May 31, Deputy Works Minister Mohd Anuar Mohd Tahir said two other packages – Lekir to Changkat Chermin or Section 9; and Changkat Chermin to Beruas or Section 10 – would open in August.
The other section of the expressway which is now in operation is Section 8 which began operations on May 31.
It has two lanes which serve as a shorter route for people to travel between Sabak Bernam, Bagan Datuk, Hutan Melintang, Teluk Intan and Sitiawan.
The stretch will see motorists reduce their traveling time to 11 minutes compared to longer travel duration when using the FT 005 (Federal Road from Sabak Bernam to Teluk Intan).
The WCE stretches from Jalan Banting-KLIA (B18) to the Tanjong Karang interchange (93.8km) in Selangor, and from Jalan Persekutuan (FR5) in Hutan Melintang to the Changkat Jering Toll Plaza (139.2km) in Perak.
The three packages in Perak cover Hutan Melintang to Teluk Intan (19.1km); Lekir to Changkat Chermin (28km); and Changkat Chermin to Beruas (16.6km).