Source: Buletin Mutiara

The Federal Government recently announced that the Penang state’s first Light Rail Transit (LRT) alignment would be extended to Tanjong Bungah instead of ending at Komtar. Commuting to the city center is eagerly anticipated by Penangites, especially those residing in Tanjung Bungah, as it will significantly save them time during peak hours and alleviate traffic congestion.

According to Transport Minister Loke Siew Fook, Komtar will remain a major transit point. The first phase will have 27 stations along a 29km stretch from Bayan Lepas to Tanjong Bungah, with construction expected to take five years. The location of the LRT depot is yet to be finalised. The Federal Government will be involved in the LRT project but not the Penang South Islands development.[1]

The state government and project manager MRT Corp are considering options for its first LRT project, but the depot location must be strategic and easily accessible to other facilities. Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim announced federal government funding for the LRT project, but he also urged the Penang government to scale down the Penang South Islands (PSI) project. Transport Minister Loke hopes to start the tender for Phase One (Bayan Lepas – Tanjong Bungah) by the end of the year. Land acquisition will be necessary for the LRT project, and they plan to use state and existing federal and PDC lands and collaborate with the private sector. The financing model for the LRT project is yet to be finalised.

Transport Minister Loke, Chief Minister Chow, and MRT Corp CEO Mohd Zarif Hashim discussed the LRT project during a visit to Komtar and the Sia Boey Urban Archaeological Park. Other officials were also present at the meeting.

The Transport Minister has expressed his wish for the tender process of Phase One (Bayan Lepas – Tanjong Bungah) to begin by the year’s end, ensuring seamless progress. Nevertheless, Loke acknowledged that land acquisition would pose an unavoidable challenge during construction.

In conclusion, the Penang LRT project represents a transformative step towards a more efficient and sustainable public transportation network. With careful planning and collaboration between the government, MRT Corp, and the private sector, the LRT is soon to become a vital lifeline for Penang, setting an example for other cities in Malaysia to follow suit.


[1] Penang’s first LRT alignment from Bayan Lepas to Tanjong Bungah. Bulletin Mutiara,