Stop-work order issued for Air Itam-Tun Dr LCE Expressway bypass construction


Source: Facebook

The contractor for the Air Itam-Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu Expressway bypass (Package Two) has been hit with a stop-work order. The Penang Island City Council (MBPP) issued the order to Consortium Zenith Construction (CZC) Sdn Bhd due to non-compliance with established guidelines, as reported by The Star newspaper.

Penang infrastructure, transport, and digital committee chairman Zairil Khir Johari stated that the order was issued after it was found that the developer continued construction activities on public holidays, violating the prescribed work limitations. “The stop-work order was issued today because the project developer kept working on public holidays. They were supposed to do only mitigation work at the construction site, but they did more than that,” Zairil explained.

According to a notice by MBPP, work on the stretch between Thean Teik Highway and Changkat Tembaga was halted after the council determined that the construction activities caused a nuisance. Construction is permitted only between 8 AM and 8 PM from Monday to Saturday, with no work allowed on Sundays and public holidays, except for necessary mitigation work approved by MBPP if site conditions pose a danger to the public.

“Any deviation from these regulations will be met with strict enforcement action, including potential fines and work stoppage,” the notice read. The stop-work order was issued under Section 82 of the Local Government Act 1976. The duration of the stop-work order remains uncertain.

Seri Delima assemblyman Connie Tan expressed her disappointment with CZC over the disturbances caused to the community. Despite numerous attempts to engage with the developer for better coordination and updates, the residents’ requests were met with inaction. Tan highlighted that construction activities extended until 12:30 AM on Monday, depriving residents of rest, and causing damage to nearby properties and muddy floods.

Tan urged the project developer to immediately halt all overtime construction activities and strictly adhere to prescribed working hours. She emphasized the need for better scheduling to ensure safety and minimal disturbance, calling on the Penang Infrastructure Corporation to enhance its monitoring systems and ensure strict compliance with regulations.

Last month, debris from blasting works at the site damaged two condominium blocks in Island Park, causing property damage but no injuries. The construction work has also affected several nearby houses, particularly during rain, as residue from the site flows into the neighborhood compounds.

When completed, the project aims to reduce the current 40-minute drive between Bandar Baru Air Itam and the Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu Expressway to under 10 minutes. Package Two includes three interchanges and will involve upgrading the drainage system and existing roads, as well as utility relocation work. The project is scheduled for completion next year.

  1. Goppal Balan
    May 27th, 2024 at 11:25 | #1

    impose fine as a reinforcement, why stop work order, delaying important projects

  2. Islander
    May 30th, 2024 at 11:01 | #2

    @Goppal Balan

    It will become like they are paying a fine to accelerate their progress, with no pain.
    Stop their work only then they feel pain. Time is worth more than the fine.

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