Improved flow: Vehicles coming from Jalan Masjid Negeri using the new U-turn (middle) viewed from the Udini roundabout (foreground).
Penang Island City Council (MBPP) engineering department deputy director A. Rajendran said the upgrading of the 600m-stretch included the construction of a 2.1m-high U-turn, widening of Jalan Masjid Negeri, acceleration lane for vehicles coming out from Jalan Yeap Chor Ee, and removal of the traffic lights at the intersection of Jalan Masjid Negeri and Jalan Delima.
“The congestion has been reduced by about 15% since the new road system started last Friday.
“The traffic lights junction there used to be a bottleneck and vehicles could build up to Tesco Jelutong or Seameo Recsam.
“Now, the traffic disperses faster from my observation,” he told a press conference at the site on Tuesday.
State Local Government, Traffic Management and Flood Mitigation Committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow said the RM7.3mil project was originally scheduled for completion in Sept 23, 2013.
He said the delay was caused mainly by the transplanting of 60 trees along Jalan Masjid Negeri and the relocation of the utility facilities by Telekom Malaysia, Time Dotcom, Indah Water Konsortium and Penang Water Supply Corporation.
“We penalised the contractor for late delivery as the project was supposed to finish on March 22,” he said.
Resident Charlie Tan urged the council to construct a sound barrier as his house was close to the main road.
“We can feel the vibration whenever heavy vehicles pass by the main road,” said the 49-year-old businessman. - By The Star