The STAR

April 14, 2008

Not fighting a losing battle

By CHRISTINA LOW and FAZLEENA AZIZ

For the first time residents of eight residential areas in Ampang have come together to meet their elected representatives after the recent general election.

And there was a good reason for the meeting.

The residents from Taman Hijau, Ukay Heights, Taman TAR, Dataran Ukay, Taman Hillview, Bukit Antarabangsa, Taman Melawati and Taman Zooview met up with Selangor state executive councillor for tourism, consumer affairs and environment Elizabeth Wong, Gombak MP Azmin Ali and Ampang MP Zuraida Kamaruddin to air their grouses over the rampant hillside development projects in Ampang.

The gathering at Taman Hijau was attended by nearly hundred residents and saw many questions raised over the approved hillside developments by the Ampang Jaya Municipal Council (MPAJ) and the future of the hills and nature reserves in Ampang, which they had fought for all these years.

Zuraida said that she was glad to see the residents coming together for a common cause and expressed her unhappiness over the projects too.

“I am very disappointed with some of the developers who have embarked on these projects without taking other matters such as the environment and the residents’ objection into consideration,” she said.

She also responded to Taman Hijau residents’ complaint over a proposed project on the 24.9ha-site (61.54-acre) near the Taman Hijau Apartment which is a mixed development comprising 149 bungalows and 460 shop/office units in a 10-storey building.

“The project will not only affect Taman Hijau residents but also the neighbouring areas. We would surely do our best to express our objection,” said Zuraida.

For Taman Zooview resident Tan Lor Chee, she was glad that the representatives came forward to meet the residents to get a clearer picture on matters.

“At least we know that we have the support of our wakil rakyat, and we hope they will continue to assist, listen to us and take action,” said Tan who had been living in Taman Zooview for the past 18 years.

Tan said the hillside developments near her area had caused plenty of damages to nature and the neighbouring areas like Ukay Perdana.

“We had monkeys coming into our compounds since their natural habitat were being destroyed,” said Tan.

The 50-year-old school-teacher also added that the residents had met up with the council couple of times but none of the meetings were fruitful.

Joint Action Committee For Bukit Gasing (JACBG) member Gary Yeoh said he appreciated that the state government was working on a more transparent mode.

According to an expatriate, who only wanted to be known as Denis, the residents were happy with the outcome of the meeting.

“Earlier all our objection letters to the council received terse replies stating that our objections were irrelevant considering these are major projects,” he said.

Among the other projects being planned for the area are the construction of 21 three-storey houses on a 1.85ha land between Jalan Kelab Ukay 5 and Jalan Kelab Ukay 6, a few meters away from the Sungai Sering. The site is situated next to an oxidation pond near Taman Kelab Ukay. Another project of concern to the residents is the Taman Melawati Hill in phase 3, a well-hidden recreational trail for many residents in and around Taman Melawati, where a proposed housing development project is set to take place.

Both projects had been approved by the MPAJ.

Recently Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim put two hillside projects in Bukit Antarabangsa, that was approved by the MPAJ, on hold until the projects were reviewed.

Thanks to English daily theStar & Chinese paper SinChew for covering our story.

A big thanks too to MALAYSIAKINI.TV for the following report:-

Elizabeth Wong promises to review ‘approved’ developments
12 April 2008 | 06:41 min
News Clips / General

The new Selangor state government has recently put a ban on hillslope development but allowing 141 hillslope projects that have been approved by the previous administration to continue.

Speaking to concerned residents of Ampang, Elizabeth Wong, Selangor exco member who the environment as one of her portfolios, said that she and her team will investigate the approved developments and urge the residents to assist her with information that she can take to the state government.
Camera & editing: Uzair Sawal

Thanks also to the following BLOGGERS for their reporting:

http://rockybru.blogspot.com/2008/04/uphill-task-in-saving-hill.html

http://serimenanti-solok.blogspot.com/2008/04/trail-of-destructions-yet-developers.html

http://muststopthis.blogspot.com/2008/04/what-does-it-take-for-us-to-pay-more.html

Last but not least, thanks to our friends in B.Antarabangsa:

http://www.antarabangsa.net/news.htm

 

We need to

SAVE AMPANG HILLS

 

Residents of

Taman Hijau, Ukay Heights, Dataran Ukay 

Taman TAR, Taman Hillview, Bukit Antarabangsa

Taman Melawati, Taman ZooView

 

In a call to the Selangor State Government to Save Ampang Hills. 

Stop the Landslides:  MPAJ must be accountable for their actions & projects they approve.

Keep the Greenery:  rampant development of Ampang Hills disrupt bodies of water resulting in water shortage, flooding, soil erosion, landslides & destruction of remaining green areas in Selangor.

Protect our families & our homes.

 

Please come and support. Call your friends & neighbours too.

Date:     Saturday, 12 April 2008

Time:    10.00 am

Venue:  Taman Hijau, Ukay Heights, Ampang

 

Activities:  Show of solidarity against irresponsible hillslope development 

                  Attendance by representatives from the Selangor State Government

                  Press Conference

                    

Directions: Along Ulu Kelang, at traffic lights junction in front of Flamingo hotel,

turn into Jln Kolam Ayer at Petronas. Drive pass ISKL, turn left into small bridge after the SPCA.

Drive up the hill until you see ‘Taman Hijau’ signboard on the right. Turn in.

saveukayhts@email.com