Rail News


November 24 , 2021

Chow's suggestion to discontinue funicular train draws ire

November 17, 2021 (Malaysia)

Consumers' Association of Penang (CAP) president Mohideen Abdul Kader has reacted with shock and dismay to the suggestion by Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow that the state government is considering shutting down the problematic Penang Hill funicular train service if it continues to break down.

While Chow stressed on the importance of passenger safety, CAP said in a statement today that it was shocked at his announcement last week and it hopes that the shutdown will not be a permanent one.

"The iconic Penang Hill Railway was opened in 1923 with work beginning in 1920. The last modernisation of the train was in 2011 which reduced the time of the whole journey to just 10 minutes.

"Penang lost its iconic ferry in December last year. Are we going to lose another icon that has been operating for nearly 100 years?" asked Mohideen.

He questioned if this announcement was made to favour the cable car project proposed by the state government.

"This announcement of the possible shutting down of the Penang Hill Railway seems to be building up the logic of the need for a cable car, either as a replacement or an alternative to carrying people up the hill.

"CAP is not against shutting down the Penang Hill Railway for repairs or servicing as the safety of the train is most important, but to give the excuse that the train continues to break down and is problematic, and therefore that it may be shut down is like giving up any hope on this iconic service which is both important for tourists and residents on the hill, he said.


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