Kuala Lumpur Parking Rates Up by up to 200%
Automologist LING is not surprised and has gone past being annoyed.
Last October, there was another toll price hike for 18 highways in Malaysia. I pass three tolls to get from the suburb, where I live, to Kuala Lumpur city centre – I now pay 42% more in toll fees for each return trip to the city. Sudden toll rate hikes, abrupt petrol price surges (when the subsidy was still in place), and now steep increase in parking rates…I’m not even surprised nor annoyed anymore.
Parking rates for spaces owned by the KL City Hall (DBKL) were increased last week by at least 150%; in some places, rates were revised from 80 cents an hour to MYR2 for the first hour and MYR3 for each subsequent hour. Areas affected included high-density areas like Bukit Bintang, Solaris Mont Kiara, TTDI and Bangsar. The price hike will continue to be implemented in stages until 1 August, up to 200% in some places.
KL Mayor, Amin Nordin, was reported as saying that “I know I am going to be very unpopular, but it has to be done because traffic in Kuala Lumpur is already bursting at the seams.” The city receives 50,000 new cars registrations every month.
Amin wants to encourage people to car pool, but really, you would only car pool if you are so fortunate to live near someone going the same way as you. What are the chances? Even if you do, I once carpooled with a colleague who lived a few roads away, and I have to admit that it was incredibly inconvenient when either one of us needed to go to/leave work earlier/later, which occurred more often than not – so, it didn’t last long.
While it may seem like high parking rates is a solution to traffic congestion, it is only but one of it. Connectivity between the city centre and the greater Kuala Lumpur area remains incomplete – the MRT will only begin service end of the year – and the “last mile” distance between public transportation hubs and the commuter’s final destination is still problematic – pedestrian walkways are almost non-existent.
Opposition MP, Nurul Izzah, told Malay Mail that the Mayor had claimed that there was a master-plan for the city’s public transportation, involving ten agencies, but this mysterious master-plan has yet to make a public appearance.
Of course, citizens are livid and entreat/demand that DBKL reconsider the additional burden that the new parking rates would place on them. Amin has already said that the rates will still go up but City Hall will be reassessing the amount. But, based on price hike occurrences in our country in the past, motorists usually just pay up, move on and cut corners elsewhere. And so will I.