Friday, January 09, 2009

DUKE - Duta Ulu Klang Expressway - so far so good!

Today was the opening of the Duta Ulu Klang Expressway (DUKE) and I jumped to the opportunity to test it out. The reason being, driving around the Second Middle Ring Road (MRR2 or Jalan Linkaran Tengah 2) has been such a chore lately as it congests up after Zoo View, Kampung Pasir, all the way along Bukit Antarabangsa till the interchange with Jalan Ampang - for no apparent reason. I really do not understand why there is a standstill at all, considering the flyover over Jalan Ampang to Cheras is free flowing.

So DUKE is the answer for me: to bypass all the cars around Bukit Antarabangsa. Here is the map which I've colour coded to indicate traffic congestion (the redder, the more traffic), and my alternate route from Melawati to Ampang (in green towards DUKE). Click for glorious technicolour.

The turnoff from Wangsa Maju to DUKE along Jelatek was rather abrupt, and the road in today was especially messy with gravel. But once you are on, its plain sailing towards the rolling (and currently dangerous) hills of Bukit Antarabangsa. Its quite a sight.

After a few kilometers, the exits are clearly marked: one going North back towards Melawati / Gentings) and the other south towards Jln Ampang. I took the Jln Ampang exit, to rejoin the madness of the congestion.

Merging with the traffic was relatively easy, as I was the rare ones to approach from DUKE. There was only one other car; a white Kancil which tried the new Expressway.

Then it was the usual trudge to get past the corner, for normal traffic again.

Overall, the time taken was about 15 minutes for a journey which took 45 minutes yesterday. So its a real time saver for now.

I did not notice any toll booths, so I can use this route for free indefinitely. The booths are further up the Expressway around the Air Panas / Setapak area. DUKE is not fully complete yet. It currently terminates at Sentul which leads either to the city, or to the new Expressway link (another toll) which feeds traffic to either Batu Caves or Genting Highlands, i.e. meeting MRR2 on the north east.

I am really happy that the DUKE designers didn't do a AKLEH (Ampang - KL Elevated Highway) by not having fully formed interchanges, i.e. only allowing traffic into the highway and not allowing traffic to get off unless they pay the toll charges twice. However I wonder if this would mean that the Mat Rempits or KL Drifters will now use the Jelatek / Ampang section of DUKE to practise.

Try it out, and hopefully there are more people from the area needing to get to Jelatek/Setapak/Sentul/Duta than more people trying to get to Jalan Ampang. Otherwise DUKE will just exaberate the problem.

yk

[Update: 12th Feb 2009: They have started charging for tolls, which is great, because the feed into MRR2 was starting to get jammed in the morning. Yahoo for me.]

5 lewsers:

Chan said...

very detail.. but cant really visualise :P
wait til i try it out la.
thanks for sharing

ghodack said...

Nice explainations. Gotta try today!

Fakawi said...

tried the route.. thanks! you just saved me 10 years of my life that would otherwise been wasted getting stuck in the jam caused by the PUKE highway...

Gee said...

Hi,
can anyone teach me which exit shud i take if i'm coming from duta link and my opis in raja chulan?thanks so much.

Yoon Kit said...

Gee,

Not sure how the DUKE will help you get to the center of town: It will only link NKVE with MRR2. The closest it gets to town would be the Semarak exit, which you'd have to go through either Yap Kwan Seng or via Bukit Bintang.


yk