KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 27 (Bernama) — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak today opened the upgraded 35-year-old Puduraya bus terminal and renamed it Pudu Sentral.
He said the change in the name of the terminal, which began operations in 1976, was in keeping with its modern and new look, on par with an airport.
Najib said the name was suggested by one of his Twitter fans who proposed the name after he (Najib) had tweeted earlier today that he would be visiting the terminal.
He said he discussed the name with the management of the terminal and it was agreed upon.
“I received many proposals for a change in the name of the bus terminal to reflect a facility of high quality,” he told reporters after opening the new-look terminal.
The terminal was shut down temporarily in March 2010, a year after the government found it to be in dire need of upgrade and renovation to improve services and public safety.
The terminal, which is now fully air-conditioned and has escalators and a public address system to announce the arrival and departure of buses, is also equipped with 296 closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras.
The CCTV cameras, installed at strategic points, will be monitored by 48 security staff to ensure passenger and visitor safety and comfort.
Najib spent some time touring the terminal and interacting with the people, and handed over Aidilfitri goodies to express bus passengers returning to their hometowns and villages for the festival.
Today’s visit was Najib’s third to the terminal since he became the prime minister on April 3, 2009.
On his first visit itself, three weeks after taking office as the prime minister, Najib called for the immediate upgrading of the then Hentian Puduraya, saying the terminal building was old and did not provide comfort to the users.
The renovation job was undertaken by UDA Holdings Berhad in two phases at a cost of RM52 million.
Najib said he was most satisfied with the upgrading which he commended as being of high quality.
“I asked two tourists from Germany what they thought of the new terminal and they told me it was just like an airport. Others also responded favourably. I am so proud of this development. This is what I had in mind for the rakyat (people). I like it when the public enjoys such a facility,” he said.
The prime minister also urged Pudu Sentral to maintain cleanliness at the terminal.
Meanwhile, a check by Bernama revealed that visitors were most satisfied with the user-friendly facilities at the terminal.
K.P. Lim, 66, said the atmosphere at the terminal now was a far cry from that of the past, what with the air-conditioning and less noisy environment.
“Previously, it was very hot and very noisy. Old people like myself were uncomfortable then. I am very satisfied now with the upgrading,” he said.
Maimunah Ahmad Pardi, 55, said passengers would not mind waiting long for buses because the terminal was clean and cozy.
Nurul Huda Helmy, 22, who assists her mother at a shop at the terminal, said the new environment helped to boost sales at the outlet run by her mother there for 26 years.
“It was difficult to earn even RM200 per day then but now I can make up to RM500. More people are coming here now with the improved environment, and we are happy to serve them,” she said.
Accompanying Najib on the visit was Transport Minister Datuk Seri Kong Cho Ha, Federal Territories and Urban Well-being Minister Datuk Raja Nong Chik Raja Zainal Abidin, Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) chairman Tan Sri Syed Hamid Albar and UDA Holdings Berhad chairman Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed.
Source : Bernama