The Penang light rail project

Pattaya monorail project delayed, Bangkok Chinatown facelift, Singapore's green plan, and more construction and infrastructure news in Southeast Asia.

This week I continue exploring the proposed regional transit systems of Southeast Asia. The state of Penang has several transport projects planned, starting with the Bayan Lepas LRT.

While putting this resource together I realised it’s now been over a year since I was last in Penang. I was there for the lunar new year in January 2020, just when the world was starting to realise that the mysterious super-contagious influenza in China might become a global issue. I ended up going to India and Thailand before returning to Vietnam.

Penang is one of my favourite places in Southeast Asia, and it’s on the shortlist of places I would retitre to if I had to make such a decision. As we enter the second year of the pandemic I’m not sure when I will be able to make my next annual visit. Once we can travel again, and if the light rail starts construction, I will go back and do a profile of what is being built near the stations (similar to the Line 1 HCMC Metro profile).

If you’re new to Living In Asia, here are the previous regional cities that have been covered that are planning a transit railway:



Latest Posts at Living In Asia

The Bayan Lepas LRT is the proposed Penang light rail transit system that will connect Georgetown in the north of the island to the airport at Bayan Lepas in the south.

Updated Posts



“The single-track design for the first phase of the Mindanao Railway Project (MRP) is "not what the Mindanawans were asking for," Mindanao Development Authority (Minda) Chairman Emmanuel Piñol said in a recent forum.”


“It’s back to the drawing board for the proposed Pattaya monorail project after the government suggested that a high-speed train linking the region’s three main airports would terminate in Huay Yai instead of Pattaya City.”

“It could result in more earth being moved than both the Panama and the Suez canals combined - and it won’t pay for itself. Stevie Knight asks if the Thai Canal is still worth consideration?”

Other News


“While high-profile land grabbing disputes involving disempowered communities have made headlines in Cambodia in recent years, the case of Arey Ksat – a village of well-connected and wealthy residents near Phnom Penh – shows few are safe from the practice.”

“And how instability, climate, and neglect drove their slow collapse.”



Some photos of the new electric-powered Yogyakarta–Solo KRL Commuterline.


“While some of the heritage buildings in the country are being refurbished and gaining new attention, one of which is the Metropolitan Theater in Manila City, the same cannot be said for San Sebastian Basilica. The historic church launched an online petition last January to stop the construction of a 31-story condominium behind it that, according to the church, poses danger to its site and community.”



“…the 1.8-km-long stretch of road from the July 22 roundabout to Ratchawong Road will have its lanes reduced to three, as the pavement will be widened to accommodate street vendors and pedestrians…”

“Despite the BMA's decision to delay a fare hike on electric trains, this form of public transport fails to remain a basic service within the grasp of the average city resident.”


From District 1 I saw this new building development in District 7 all lit up like a Christmas tree. This is part of the future Hyatt Place development.

[View video on Instagram.]

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