KOTA TINGGI: Many local businessmen hope for the completion of the Senai-Desaru Highway (SDE) project because this will bring an increase in number of tourists to Desaru.
Food stall owner, Mohd Yusof Abd Kadir, 56, said he was disappointed when he heard the SDE highway would not be operational until next year as announced by Mentri Besar Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman last month.
“Many of us are depending on the highway to open as it will boost tourism here,” he said. The father of eight said the highway’s opening could bring new development to Bandar Penawar.
Businessman Mustafa Ismail, 52, said Desaru was popular among Singaporeans and the highway would make it easier for them to visit the area.
“The highway will cut travelling time here by over an hour,” he said.
Mustafa said he often travelled to Johor Baru with his wife to buy groceries for their stall and the long drive was tiring.
Norasyikin Katiman, 45, echoed Mustafa’s sentiment because she believed the highway would make it easier for locals and tourists to travel to and from Desaru.
“The highway will surely boost tourism and our businesses as many of us rely on tourist arrivals especially during the weekends and public holidays,” she said.
However, SDE chief executive officer Mustaza Salim said the final 27km stretch from Cahaya Baru to Desaru would be fully operational by end of this year.
“The stretch of highway including the 1.7km long bridge spanning across Sungai Johor should be operational between Oct and Dec this year,” he said.
Mustaza said the delay in completing the bridge was due to careful calculations and high precision involved in connecting the bridge.
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