KUALA LIPIS, July 13, 2015:

Sections of the 390km Central Spine Road (CSR), which runs from Bentong in Pahang to Gua Musang in Kelantan, were officially opened today.

Works Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof said with the opening of the two sections between Kampung Kubang Rusa and Felda Chegar Perah in Pahang on Jan 10 and July 5, the journey had been shortened by 70 minutes, even though the road was only 6km shorter.

He said this was a good alternative for Kuala Lumpur motorists returning to Kelantan to celebrate Hari Raya Aidilfitri compared with using East Coast Highway 1.

“Meanwhile, two more sections, from Felda Chegar Perah 2 to Kampung Kechur, stretching 24.2km, were opened today,” he said when officiating the new route here, adding that the four new sections would be boon to those returning to Kelantan via Kuala Lipis.

“Our priority is to reduce road accidents as accident statistics on the original route have reached a critical level due to the winding and hilly road terrain.

“The new road is a straight stretch but motorists are advised to observe the speed limit and be careful.”

The four sections comprise 10% of the overall project, which involves the construction of new roads and upgrading of existing sections to four lanes in accordance with Public Works Department standards.

On whether toll would be imposed on the road, Fadillah said: “As the name of CSR suggests, the road is a corporate social responsibility of the government to the people of Pahang and Kelantan.”

The CSR is a high-impact infrastructure project that started in 2008 under the 10th Malaysia Plan and comprises six main packages. It would cost RM6.6 billion.

The six packages are Kuala Krai to Sungai Lakit Bridge, Kelantan, covering 51km; Sungai Lakit Bridge to Gua Musang, Kelantan (63km); Gua Musang to Kampung Relong, Pahang (107km); Kampung Relong to Raub, Pahang (56km); Raub to Bentong, Pahang (60km) and Bentong to Simpang Pelangai (53km).

“In the interest of safety and to ease congestion on existing federal roads from Gua Musang to Kampung Relong and from Raub to Bentong, the ministry is giving priority to the Bentong bypass project, which is being finalised.”

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