Thursday, 4 October 2018, Kuching: The three-day Jelajah FT Roadpedia to look at the progress made at all the 11 works packages of Pan Borneo Highway Sarawak ended successfully on Monday evening with the last stop at Beluru Section under Works Packages 11 (Sungai Tangap-Pujut Link Road).
Led by Works Minister Baru Bian, the road trip in his own words, is a viable way to assess progress of this single largest infrastructure project in the state.
Together, the entourage comprising senior officials from Works Ministry, Ministry of Infrastructure Development and Transportation (MIDT), Sarawak Public Works Department (JKRS) and senior management staff of Lebuhraya Borneo Utara criss-crossed the entire stretch of current federal trunk road which is being upgraded into the Pan Borneo Highway Sarawak.
FT Roadpedia Pan Borneo Highway Sarawak began with a visit to Telok Melano-Sematan (Works Package 01) on the first day where the entourage were briefed on progress made at this stretch which is expected to be completed by early next year.
On the second day, the entourage moved on visit Serian Interchange which is nicely taking shape before moving on to stop at Pantu Junction-Batang Skrang (Works Package 04) to look at its base camp.
While there, the entourage had the opportunity to see a dedicated training centre and Centralised Labour Quarters (CLQ) which provides comfortable living quarters. The CLQ at WPC 04 is equipped with a First Aid room, canteen and kitchen for residents to cook if they choose.
Several pit stops were made throughout the trip. Among these were at Batang Rajang Bridge or popularly known as Durin Bridge where a twin bridge is being built next to the existing to make way for a 4-lane bridge. Durin Bridge, at 1.708km is the longest river bridge in Sarawak today.
In the evening of the second day, the entourage had the opportunity to hear about how LBU is leveraging on technology through the Integrated Project Management System (IPMS) which is used in the design, construction, monitoring and preparing for asset management of the Pan Borneo Highway.
The third and final day of FT Roadpedia saw the Minister and entourage visit a dilapidated school in Selangau which is being refurbished and repaired by WPC 08, Musyati-Mudajaya JV. Works Minister Baru Bian performed the ground-breaking ceremony for SK Sungai Buloh where Musyati Mudajaya will build eight units of teacher’s hostel, drainage as well as refurbish its canteen and hostel for female pupils with a total cost of RM1.5mil.
From there, the entourage stopped at Tatau Bridge which is retained as it has passed the proof load test. This two-lane bridge will serve Sibu bound traffic while another parallel bridge will be built next to it cater for the Bintulu bound traffic upon its completion.
Moving on, the entourage then stopped at Nyabau casting yard which produces beams for the construction of Nyabau Interchange which sits right next to it. Once completed, this interchange will ease the traffic for Sibu to Miri and Miri to Sibu bound.
Throughout the road trip, the entourage was given comprehensive briefings on the entire stretch all the way to Miri, thus giving them an overview of the entire project.
Although a long and tiring trip over a short 3 days, FT Roadpedia Pan Borneo Highway Sarawak was an exciting, insightful and fun trip covering a distance of almost 1,000km.