Tuesday June 10, 2008
By CHRISTINA LOW
BUS shelters are rarely nice places to wait for public transport, as they are often dirty and not well maintained.
At night, many bus shelters look like a scene from a haunted house with the dimly-lit fluorescent lighting.
This will have to change if Kuala Lumpur plans on becoming a world-class city and Parisign Marketing Sdn Bhd has taken the first step to help improve the situation.
“We wanted to do something nice and adaptable to the environment and buildings around us,” Parisign managing director Michael Tan said.
Shiny sight: At night, the shelters are brightly lit to enhance safety.
The company specialising in signage manufacturing took months to study shelters in various parts of the world before deciding on one that will suit the local weather.
“In China, they have winter so their shelters are built for it but we can’t adapt such designs here as we have tropical weather,’ Tan, who has more than 25 years experience in building bus shelters, said.
Early this year, the company completed 154 bus and taxi shelters allocated to them by Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL).
All bear the same design of glass panels and are brightly lit at night.
They also give the public a good view of the city’s skyline.
General manager Henry Tan, who was put in charge of completing the shelters, said the design was chosen to give the city a modern outlook as well as make the shelters a safer place to wait for taxis and buses.
Work on the shelters began in June last year and it took three days to complete a shelter, before the laying of electricity cables, tiling and lighting could be added.
The glass roof and backdrop differentiate the shelters from others as it was the company’s copyrighted design.
Parisign did not back down from complaints or comments on the new shelters.
Colourful: One of the new shelters along Jalan Sultan Ismail.
“We made a lot of adjustments after listening to public feedback. Most of the complaints were about the glass roof and that it was too hot,” Henry said after a trial bus shelter was placed in the Jalan Pudu area.
Parsign went on to improve its glass ceiling to provide more protection from the rain and added Rike Cool lamination, which is said to be able to provide at least 90% protection from IR radiation and also able to generate a cooling environment.
For the new style seating which is made of stainless steel, Tan said they had received complaints that it was too hot, especially during the dry season, but Parisign continued with the design in hopes of curbing vandalism.
The shelters are also equipped with side glass panels for more protection as well as bus route maps for the convenience of the public.
“We will also be introducing vending machines at the shelters so that the public can buy drinks while waiting, as certain locations do not have kiosks,” Henry said.
At night, all bus shelters are fully lighted and site inspectors will monitor the conditions regularly.
“They will check if there are bills stuck on our shelters as well as the power source is fully functioning,” Henry said, adding that any repairs would be completed within three days.
Parisign completed the task as a form of sponsorship with its sole income coming from advertisements on the shelters.
“We have invested RM22mil in building the shelters,” Henry said.
Costs also runs high if an accident occurs involving the shelters or vandals damage the glass panels, which the company has to replace within 24 hours.
From the revenue received from the advertising, Parisign said it had invested RM1.5mil in providing several improvements to the shelters.
Parisgn’s new shelters are located in Jalan Ampang, Jalan Ara, Jalan Burhanuddin Helmi, Jalan Dungun, Jalan Gereja, Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lock, Jalan Hang Tuah, Jalan Lapangan Terbang, Jalan Pahang, Jalan Munshi Abdullah, Jalan Raja Laut, Jalan Pinang, Jalan Raja Muda, Jalan Syed Putra, Jalan Yap Ah Loy, Jalan Tan Siew Sing, Jalan Tun Perak, Jalan TAR, Bukit Bintang, Jalan Dang Wangi, Jalan Imbi, Jalan Melaka, Jalan P.Ramlee, Jalan Pudu, Jalan Raja Chulan, Jalan Semantan, Jalan Melaka,Jalan Sultan Ismail and Jalan Tun Razak.
Petaling Jaya folks can look forward to such designs in their neighbourhood soon as it is the second phase project after Kuala Lumpur.
Henry said work in Petaling Jaya had begun in stages.