Cyberjaya is known for being the hotbed of new innovation and technology. It’s where autonomous vehicles were first tested in Malaysia, where Malaysia’s 5G tests was first conducted and where Taco Bell launched its first store in Malaysia. And next year, another new project is set to take place in Cyberjaya: Automated Rapid Transit (ART).
As reported by The Vibes, Datuk Abd Hamid Hussain, the Sepang Municipal Council has said that they’ll be running a three-month long pilot program with the ART system in January 2022. According to Datuk Abd Hamid, the trackless trams will be going between Persiaran Rimba Permai and Persiaran Bestari in a test of the ART’s capabilities.
“The three-carriage green vehicle as public transportation suits the council’s vision of low-carbon and smart city concept well, as it offers green mobility,” – Datuk Abd Hamid Hussain
If the ART pilot does prove to be a success, Datuk Abd Hamid says that there’s a possibility of reducing the carbon emissions in Cyberjaya up to 40% by 2030. Trackless trams remains a possibility for future modes of public transport in the city, and they hope to get things ready for the trial run by the end of the year.
Incidentally, this would be the second time an ART system is being piloted in Malaysia. The first ART tests happened in Iskandar Malaysia, Johor earlier this year. Malaysia will likely see more and more ART systems crop up around the country too, as authorities in Sarawak are also considering trying out the trams in Kuching next year.
While similar to a tram, it doesn’t require tracks as it instead runs on road like a bus. It runs on electricity, but can use other forms of green energy too. There would be a virtual track on the road in the form of road markings, and doesn’t need overhead wires for power. The ART that’ll be tested in Cyberjaya will be able to accommodate up to 307 passengers at a time and travel at speeds of up to 70km/h. It’ll also be able to run autonomously or manually driven by a driver.
As anyone who takes the bus or train daily will tell you, Malaysia’s current public transport system is in dire need of a revamp. It’ll be interesting to see just how far these trackless trams will go towards reinvigorating our local public transportation.