Cambodia will have an automated gateway transit system (AGT) ahead of 2023 – when the country is due to host the Southeast Asian Games – with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) on track to complete the feasibility study by May next year, according to the Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MPWT).
The AGT – an electric-powered mass transit system with coaches – will modernise public transport in the city and help reduce traffic congestion.
Transport Minister Sun Chanthol, who is now in Japan leading an MPWT delegation, recently visited the Yokohama Seaside Line Company, the operator of Tokyo’s AGT, to learn about the transit system and how it would work in Cambodia.
“The company shared with us their experiences in the operation and control of AGT,” Mr Chanthol said.
“AGT is a light-weight train that runs quietly on rubber tyres, reducing noise and vibration with maximum speeds of 60 kilometres per hour,” he said.
Following the visit of Prime Minister Hun Sen to Japan in August 2017, Japan agreed to provide assistance to Cambodia to build an AGT system in Phnom Penh.
“The goal is that Cambodia should have an AGT system operational before hosting the SEA Games in 2023,” the ministry said.
JICA is now working on a feasibility study for the project, which, according to Va Simsorya, the MPWT spokesman, will be completed in May. The project will cost about $8 billion.
Mr Chanthol said having an AGT system will be instrumental in alleviating traffic problems in the capital.
“The number of residents in Phnom Penh increases every year. In 2023, we will host the SEA Games, so the new transportation system will help us handle the increase in the number of tourists.”