|Prasarana's Rapid KL corporate branding for trains and buses|
|Locale||Klang Valley, Malaysia|
|Number of lines||
|Number of stations||
|Began operation||16 December 1995|
|Operator(s)||Rapid Rail Sdn Bhd and Rapid Bus Sdn Bhd|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (standard gauge)|
Rapid KL, is a corporate brand owned by Prasarana. The Rapid KL is no longer holding a company name for trains and bus services in Klang Valley. The exact name previously is Rangkaian Pengangkutan Intergrasi Deras Sdn Bhd (Rapid) and due to the company operated public transport services in Kuala Lumpur, its namely to Rapid KL. Rapid Rail Sdn Bhd and Rapid Bus Sdn Bhd is the new saparate entity formed by Prasarana to enhanced their business operation in public transport across the country.
All assets of the rail and bus services are owned by another government-owned company, Prasarana, which was also formed under the restructuring process.
Rapid Penang, which was set up as a subsidiary of Rapid KL, began running bus services in Penang on 31 July 2007 as part of the Malaysian Federal government's move to revamp bus services in Penang. However, due to restructuring progress, Rapid Penang Sdn Bhd has been merge with Rangkaian Pengangkutan Intergrasi Deras Sdn Bhd and currently known as Rapid Bus Sdn Bhd.
Public transport restructuring
The need for Kuala Lumpur's public transport system to be revamped became apparent almost immediately after the LRT lines began commercial operations when their ridership was much lower than anticipated. This caused lower than expected revenue levels and the two LRT concessionaires, Sistem Transit Aliran Ringan Sdn Bhd (Star-LRT) and Projek Usahasama Transit Ringan Automatik Sdn Bhd (Putra-LRT), could not repay their commercial loans. The financial crisis of 1997/1998 aggravated the situation. The two companies owed a total of RM5.7bil as at November 2001 when the government's Corporate Debt Restructuring Committee (CDRC) restructured the debts of the two LRT companies.
The bus service in Kuala Lumpur was also facing problems with lower ridership because of an increase in private car usage and lack of capital investments. The two new bus consortia which were formed in the mid 1990s to take over all bus services in Kuala Lumpur - Intrakota Komposit and Cityliner - began facing financial problems. Intrakota had reportedly accumulated losses amounting to RM450mil from the 1997/1998 financial crisis until SPNB took over in 2003.
With lower revenue, the bus operators could not maintain their fleets, much less invest in more buses. Frequencies and service deteriorated as buses began breaking down.
Public transport usage in the Klang Valley area dropped to about 16% of all total trips, one of the lowest in the Asian region.
Since taking over the LRTs and bus network, RapidKL has taken steps to improve their service.
- Increasing LRT capacity: RapidKL and SPNB have issued tenders for the purchase of new LRT rolling stock to increase carrying capacity. Tender for 35 new train sets for the Kelana Jaya Line has been given out in October 2006 and October 2007. The trains are expected to be operational in September 2009. On 27 July 2009, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak announced that the 35 new four-car trains will be operational by end-2012.
- Boosting bus fleet: As most of the buses RapidKL inherited were old and poorly maintained, one of its immediate concerns was to get more buses on the road. In 2005, the government promised RapidKL 200 new buses.
- Increasing bus routes: RapidKL has put on several new routes to serve areas which never had bus services.
- Scheduled bus services: RapidKL introduced scheduled services for 16 routes which are not heavily utilised. For the first time in Malaysia, expected bus arrival times and timetables were put up at bus stops along routes. However, these bus frequency timetables at the bus stops, as well as in their website had been removed by the RapidKL administration. This is because they could not cope with many sorts of problems, which is traffic congestion and insufficient number of buses, which resulted in late arrival of buses.
- Common monthly passes for both LRT and buses: This is the first time commuters have monthly passes which can be used on both LRTs and buses, helping to enhance integration of the public transport system.
- Common signage for all three LRT lines: The renaming of Putra-LRT and Star-LRT together with the changing of its signage will help enhance integration of the previously unconnected systems.
- Common Ticketing System Touch 'n Go can be used in all RapidKL buses and rail lines
- Revamp of RapidKL bus network: RapidKL scrapped the old Intrakota and Cityliner routes it inherited and introduced three types of bus services: City shuttles (BANDAR), trunk buses (UTAMA),, local shuttles (TEMPATAN), and express buses (EKSPRES). City shuttles will operate within Kuala Lumpur's central business district while trunk buses will link hubs at the edge of the CBD with suburban transportation hubs. At these suburban hubs, local shuttles will radiate out from rail-based public transport stations and fan out to residential areas. Express buses provide non-stop point-to-point route to specific destination.
Rapid KL brand name services
Rapid KL brand carried three rail lines. The entire rail network operated by Rapid Rail is 56 km long and has 60 stations. In 2008, these three lines carry a total of over 350,000 passengers daily.
Rapid KL also used by Rapid Bus Sdn Bhd and is also one of the largest bus operators in the Klang Valley, next to Metrobus. Currently, there are 98 stage bus routes and 39 feeder bus services which operate from LRT stations. The bus routes operated by Rapid Bus were previously operated by Intrakota Komposit Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of DRB-Hicom Bhd; and Cityliner Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of Park May Bhd. In 2008, Rapid Bus carried around 390,000 passengers daily.