In a meeting today to address the issue at City Hall (DBKL), the cycling lane separators paultan.org mentioned in an earlier report will be removed with immediate effect. The decision was taken during a meeting, convened by DBKL with project stakeholders Urbanice, an NGO under the Ministry of Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government, town planners AJM Planning and Urban Design Group (APUDG), Cycling Kuala Lumpur, Bicycle Map Project, and bike share provider oBike.

In a statement to Utusan, Datuk Mahadi Che Ngah, project management executive directorfor DBKL said the action was taken after the lane separators were said to pose a danger to road users, especially motorcyclists. “DBKL will study the issue after receiving objections from road users,” he said.

Speaking separately to paultan.org, Jeffrey Lim, project coordinator for Cycling Kuala Lumpur, Bicycle Map Project, said problems like these were teething problems and to be expected, and remained positive that a suitable outcome would be found. “Advocacy is a life-long process and it never ends. Everything changes. It’s about how we adapt and collaborate, working towards a positive outcome. The key message here is trust,” said Lim.

The cycling lanes were created ahead of the ninth World Urban Forum to be held on February 7 to 13 for the use of delegates attending the conference, and thereafter remain part of the road infrastructure to be used by cyclists in the central business district. Controversy over the lane separators and painted lanes arose after photos on Facebook emerged showing a motorcyclist allegedly having suffered a spill after encountering the painted lane during wet weather.

Planned as a legacy project to be utilised by future users, the KL cycling lane is the first phase of the Kuala Lumpur Pedestrian and Bicycle Master Plan. The plan is proposed to run across a five-year period and aims to increase the number of pedestrians and cyclists in the city centre, thereby reducing congestion.

Up to 4 million vehicles enter the city every day. A study conducted by Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) found that less than 10% of city inhabitants walk and less than 0.1% cycle.