Monday, February 01, 2016

Recent Photos of Developments Viewed from Infinity

Photos taken by a resident from Infinity apartment:
Behind the market. Before Concord Garden


To the right (West) of TAR College and behind Villa Permai and Taman Sri Setia


Leader Garden and Chee Seng Garden in the far background
Behind Chee Seng Garden

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Appeals Board decides in favour of Sungai Ara residents


"The Appeals Board this morning decided in favour of the residents of Persiaran Kelicap and Solok Kelicap over a “special project” on hilly land near them.

... The significant proportion of the site was higher than the threshold of 250 feet above sea level with slopes exceeding 25 degrees.

There were flaws in the planning approval: The state planning committee cannot delegate its powers for approving such sensitive hill land development to the MBPP, which has no authority to approve such projects.

The Penang Structure Plan, forbidding development above 250 feet was gazetted in 2007. Planning approval for the site was granted in 2012. So that’s another issue. It must be for planning permission given before the Structure Plan.

... Not a single reporter was present; so this is unlikely to be widely reported in the media. Many of them were up on Botak Hill for a site visit, arranged by the MBPP, which was scheduled for the same time. Penang Forum steering committe members were at both places."

For more details, please read Anil Netto at http://anilnetto.com/economy/development-issues/appeals-board-decides-in-favour-of-sungai-ara-residents/

Notification of Annual General Meeting - 13 February 2016


TANJONG BUNGA RESIDENTS’ ASSOCIATION

Notification of Annual General Meeting

Dear Members and friends of TBRA,

Our Association will hold its 2016 Annual General Meeting on

Date:    Saturday 13  February 2016

Venue: Meeting Room (Boardroom) Tanjong Bunga Market, 11200 Penang, 1st floor

Time:    3 pm  (if you are not a life member please come at 2:30 to settle annual payment of membership fees. We’ll be there to make it easy !)

Agenda:

The business of the Annual General Meeting shall consist of:

    1. To receive the Chairman’s address;

    1. To confirm the minutes of the previous General Meeting;

    1. To receive and adopt the Annual Report by the Secretary;

    1. To receive and adopt the Audited Statement of Accounts by the Treasurer;

    1. To consider any resolution of which written notice should be given to the Secretary at least seven (7) clear days prior to the meeting;

    1. To discuss matters of general interest;

Please do attend !

Yours sincerely

Peter Boyd
Secretary
For and on behalf of
Tanjong Bunga Residents’ Association                                           07 January 2016

Distribution: All Members

‘Hundreds of millions in compensation’?

Jan 15, 2016 by Anil Netto

In all my years of observing politics, whether local or foreign, I have never before come across an administration that so frequently warns of the possibility of having to pay “(hundreds of) millions in compensation” to developers or landlords. To me, this mantra seems to be a favourite fall-back position (to browbeat critics into silence?).

The latest occasion was when prominent lawyer Agatha Foo presented Penang Forum’s position on ‘special projects’ on hill land during a meeting with the state government in Komtar on 11 January 2016.

In a nutshell:

In 1996, a Development and Control Masterplan was drawn up. This was just a guideline that was never gazetted. Under this guideline, several areas of hill land under conservation were scandalously classified as housing (bungalow lots). No thanks to the BN administration back then.

In 2007, the Penang Structure Plan was gazetted, thus making it a legal document. This forbade development more than 250 feet above sea level and on slopes more than 25 degree gradient. But it made an exception, allowing limited development for ‘special projects’. Unfortunately, it did not provide a definition for special projects.

In 2009, the State Planning Committee came up with a guideline to define special projects, which seemed to widen their scope. It allowed public infrastructure and, for cases where planning permission had been approved before the Structure Plan was adopted, it accepted any change of conditions to housing.

Crucially, the 2009 guideline also accepted the hill land areas that were classified as housing zones in the 1996 masterplan, which was really only a guideline.

Penang Forum’s contention is that these areas should have been rezoned back to their original status, i.e. hill land under the Land Conservation Act 1960, in compliance with the Penang Structure Plan forbidding development above 250 feet.

No compensation need be payable as the rezoning would only apply to areas where no planning application had been approved and no development work had started (thus distinguishing it from the Boustead case in George Town where piling work had already begun and heritage conditions were later imposed to lower the height). Penang Forum is not asking for the revocation or modification of planning permission or asking that land be taken over for a public purpose; so the question of compensation should not arise.

Penang Forum also noted that planning permissions can only be extended five times; so, planning permissions approved before 2008 could not have been extended beyond 2012; therefore the 22 projects approved since 2012 are deemed new approvals. (The state government, however, claims applications can be submitted anytime.)
Stringent new conditions for hill land can be imposed when extending planning permissions.

If the Structure Plan only allows limited development for special projects, how could 55 high-rise blocks (including a hotel), approved since 2008, be regarded as “limited development”?

To this, the chief minister, after warning that the state government might be liable to pay “millions in compensation” if it did not approve these projects, then invited Agatha to meet his state legal advisors and try and convince them regarding Penang Forum’s position.

[The full text is available at this external link: https://goo.gl/OCg1oq]
... Or you can click here to continue and ...

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

TBRA Press-Release Hurray for Teh !


Tanjong Bunga’s Residents’ Association pays tribute to ADUN Teh who followed his conscience and voted for a principle.  This was taken by some as supporting the opposition and caused uproar in the Penang Assembly.

On 21 November 2015, a motion on land reclamation was debated by the Penang government’s State Assembly. Teh Yee Cheu (Tanjong Bunga), also known as the bicycle ADUN and long acknowledged as an environmental activist, was the only DAP ADUN who voted in favor of the motion. The 5 PKR ADUNs who abstained certainly conveyed a message that this issue is bigger than Party politics.

The motion asked that all projects or concessions involving reclamation be made public before they are finalised.  It also wanted any new reclamation projects to be suspended until a complete and detailed environmental impact assessment was conducted. The motion had been filed by Muhammad Farid Saad (BN-Pulau Betong).

Short-term Party politics seem to have taken priority over major environmental concerns. Yet, environmental impact assessments (EIA) must be taken seriously. EIAs must be independent and studied in depth. We need to recall how angry many residents were just last year when the EIA for STP2 was hastily approved without considering public opposition and the impact of the project on fisherfolk?

The Penang Forum had been very disappointed with the Penang State government’s determined obsession to reclaim and develop land on the island with little or no vision on sustainability for the future. Later, in a letter to the new Mayor of Penang, Patahiyah Ismail, the Forum wrote eloquently:  “Our hills are being raped; land reclamation is altering our coastlines beyond recognition; there are proposals to eliminate critical sea grass beds; siltation is destroying our beaches; fishing grounds shrink by the day; and our waters are being polluted. There has been little regard for inadequate infrastructure and current residents’ needs and concerns.”

YB Teh Yee Cheu has been consistent in alerting the media and the public about environmental disasters waiting to happen. TBRA remembers how he shaved his head over Botak Hill and how, more recently, he called on the State government to preserve the Penang seagrass bed at the Middle Bank, off the Penang Bridge, as a conservation and heritage area. Closer to home, he has consistently supported TBRA’s calls to turn the so-called “Sore Thumb” into a public park. Yet, this year, PDC, the State owned Development Corporation was allowed to call for tenders on a huge reclamation (up to 20 acres) off that very same site.

So how could Teh be expected to vote against a demand for independent EIAs, public hearings, for feedback, opinions and recommendations to be seriously considered before embarking on reclamation projects?  Recently, the State government has been attacked over lack of planning, over its too friendly relations with developers.

TBRA believes that Teh Yee Cheu was not only right to follow his convictions but also expressed the Penang people’s opposition to reclamations.

Dato’ Renji Sathiah

Chairman
Tanjung Bungah Residents’ Association
Tel: 0172128792    





Postscript for information:

Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng had hoped for a unanimous vote to defeat the motion. He warned all his faithful: “if you stand with UMNO, you will pay the price!”

But the outcome was NOT unanimous. The motion was approved by 10, rejected by 22 while 5 abstained.

During the debate, Farid proposed that any projects which brought negative effects to Penang should be cancelled.

The state government was also urged to carry out a comprehensive and oceanic study, especially on the environmental and social impact caused by already-completed reclamation projects, and to stop all imminent reclamation project plans in the pipeline until this study had been completed.

YB Teh recalled a quote of his former party national chairman, the late Karpal Singh, that “there are no permanent friends or enemies, but there must be permanent principles.”

He later apologised for his “mistake” not to follow the party line. “After discussion, I felt that I have made a mistake to vote yes, in party interest, I hearby apologise to the party and want to return to continue the party’s struggle for the future,” he said.

“I understand there will be a punishment when someone makes mistake. As organising secretary, I will accept the decision by the secretary-general to carry out the punishment,” he added.

Lim said it is not easy for someone to admit making a mistake and apologise for it.

“We will definitely discuss the matter but I would like to state my appreciation to Teh for apologising to the party,” he added.

Asked if Teh was only apologising for his mistake but would withdraw his support from the motion, Lim said “it was already done in the House, you cannot withdraw your support”.

Asked why the party does not allow an assemblyperson to express his support in what he believes in, Lim said “he has already stated his views, we leave it at that”.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

City of Dreams nightmare for Seri Tanjung Pinang residents


Comment by Anil Netto
This statement by a group of Seri Tanjung Pinang residents hammers home the point as to why land and property development-for-infrastructure swap deals are a bad idea.

Such deals compromise the development regulatory process by presenting the land reclamation or property developments projects as done deals – because they are needed to finance the infrastructure projects.

City of Dreams is intricately linked to the land-for-tunnel/highways swap deal.

Better not to have swap deals and instead separate the land reclamation/property development and infrastructure projects. Assess the technical, financial and environmental feasiblity of each project separately.

The residents are claiming the City of Dreams project is going to be 156 units per acre. If true, how is this even possible?




Press release by STP residents – 26 May 2015
Click here to

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Memorandum for YAB Mr. Lim Guan Eng, Chief Minister of Penang

This memorandum was extensively discussed in a meeting between the Chief Minister and Dato' Renji Sathiah, chairperson of the TBRA and Dato' Leong, former chairperson, on July 21, 2015.

Sustainable Development for Penang and Preparation of a State Agenda 21

Preface

We propose that the Penang Green Council develop a meaningful green agenda for Penang based on Agenda 21. Agenda 21 is universally accepted as an agenda that would guide a state towards sustainable development. To have comprehensive Agenda 21 would make Penang the first state in Malaysia to have a sustainable development plan to make the transition to sustainability.

... Click for the full memo in PDF format: https://goo.gl/hHaaGL

One of the old illustrations from Structure Plan 2005

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

TBRA Has a Facebook Page!



TBRA now has a Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/tbra2015

Please "Like" it so that you can be informed of events and new posts.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

City of Dreams turning into Tanjung Tokong residents’ nightmare

This project is just outside of Tanjong Bungah and the articles give clues that the Penang government seems to be approving developments without clear plans and transparent procedures.

"The residents are claiming the City of Dreams project is going to be 156 units per acre. If true, how is this even possible?"
See AnilNetto.com for more...


Residents showing their displeasure ... (Source: TheMalaysianInsider.com)
Lim had said that Lot 702 (3.67 acres) worth RM135.08 million had already been given to Consortium Zenith BUCG as part of its said payment in kind for the feasibility studies for three proposed roads which were 97% completed.

Local assemblyman for Tanjung Bungah, Teh Yee Cheu, who was present to support the  residents, said he had objected to the project right from the beginning.

“I objected to the proposal to rezone Lot 702 on August 12, 2014. The Penang Structure Plan is due for a review,” said Teh.

He also noted that the Penang Local Plan was still at the draft stage and had yet to be gazetted by the state government.

“Under Section 25 of the Town and Country Planning Act, the state can withdraw the approved plan by paying compensation to the developer,” added Teh. – May 25, 2015.
See TheMalaysianInsider.com for more



Thursday, May 21, 2015

TBRA Needs You! Application Form for Ordinary and Life Membership


 
Use this application form to join TBRA! https://goo.gl/3yz8A2  . 

Life membership at TBRA costs RM100 - once and for all. This is the recommended option. It saves you and us the hassle of renewing membership every year. (Life membership has been approved in the AGM in 2009 and by the Registrar of Society in 2010).

But if you are applying for ordinary membership, the entrance fee is RM8 and yearly fee is RM12.

Please make check payable to (note the spelling and punctuation marks):

              Tanjong Bunga Residents' Association Penang

Let's keep Tanjong Bunga lively but also lovely!

Saturday, April 04, 2015

Anil Netto reports on 1000 residents opposing Komtar-esque towers ...

"Residents of Tanjung Bunga packed a press conference this morning to protest against a Boon Siew Group project that will see two 50-storey buildings, one 49-storey building and one 34-storey building sprouting in the area.The project is located between Jalan Sungai Kelian and Jalan Loh Poh Heng."...

... Click here to see Anil Netto's full article and follow ups.

 .

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

TBRA 2015 AGM - Chairman’s Report Now Available!


Photo Credit:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tanjung_Bungah#/
media/File:Tanjung_Bungah.jpg
Tanjong Bunga Residents’ Association has held it's 2015 AGM on 28th March 2015. These links point to The Chairman’s report by Leong Yueh Kwong:

Why you should read and share this report: It is packed with important review and info in a few pages!


Contents -  What's inside the Chairman's report?

1.0 Highlights of 2014/2015
1.1 Submission of TBRA brief to the review of the Penang Structure Plan
1.2 The status of the “sore thumb” as a coastal zone public park
1.3 Status of Bukit Mutiara (Pearl Hill) public open space
1.4 Participation of TBRA on the 2014 Detailed EIA of the second phase of the Tanjung Tokong land reclamation
2.0 Some issues and challenges ahead
2.1 Development without planning
2.1.1 Unresolved status of Tanjung Bungah as a secondary development corridor
2.1.2 Development in north coast without a Local Plan and conflicting Structure Plan
2.1.3 High rise high density development in Jalan Permai and Jalan Sungai Kelian
2.1.4 Moving the Chinese temple to Chee Seng Garden without consultation
2.1.5 High rise high density development on Hong Hong paper factory site
2.1.6 High rise high density development in Straits Quay and Batu Ferringhi
2.2 North coast development corridor
2.2.1 Zoning and development in Batu Ferringhi
2.2.2 What is the carrying capacity of the North Coast of Penang Island?
2.2.3 Appropriate and inappropriate building approvals
2.3 The review of the Penang Structure Plan up to 2020
2.3.1 What is the status and did it follow proper procedures of public participation and consultation?
2.3.2 The status of the Local Plan after the review of the Structure Plan
3.0 Current situation for TBRA as an organization
3.1 Membership and participation of members
3.1.1 One common feature of residents’ associations is that they are active when there is a pressing issue, such as high crime rate or high rise building in low rise area. There is little interest apart of issues that directly affect them.
3.1.2 In TBRA, the number of active members are small and getting a quorum for meetings is a problem.
3.2 SWOT analysis and strategic plan?
3.2.1 There have been 2 attempts to develop a strategic plan on how to proceed. Both ended in failure due to the lack of participation of members. There is still a need to build up a shared consensus as to how we want the north coast to be. What should be the strategy that the residents can adopt to make this happen. With no clear and accepted strategy, there will be only ad hoc responses to developers like what is happening now of one neighborhood after another protesting against development proposals. In the end, the neighborhood groups loses.
4.0 The way ahead, from TBRA to North coast’s residents association?

----

Click one of these links to read the full report:

Saturday, November 08, 2014

Chee Seng Garden: NO to 40 storeys here

On 6 November, TBRA volunteers put up two banners saying "NO to 40 storeys here". The main intent was to inform as many local residents as possible about the huge tower block intended for construction on the site of the former Hong Hong printers... next morning the banners were gone. 

So this TBRA support to Chee Seng was short-lived. It is believed the banners were removed by people still inside the factory although it has been closed for quite a while. The case should be investigated and if possible the banners retrieved. All TBRA tried to do was inform other residents and alert people to the traffic jams to follow if more hi-rises are allowed to follow in the region. 

Please discuss at the next TBRA meeting on 11 Nov at 8:30 pm at the Straits Regency meeting room.

see below for more details on the site.
Secr. TBRA

News article about "HH Residence" in Tanjong Bungah

Sunday, November 02, 2014

Position Paper by (TBRA on the Inclusion of Tanjong Bunga in the Primary Development Corridor


Review of the Penang Structure Plan 2020


Position Paper

by the
Tanjong Bunga Residents’ Association (TBRA)
on the Inclusion of
Tanjong Bunga in the Primary Development Corridor




Penang, April 2014



Executive Summary

I THE INCLUSION OF TANJONG BUNGA IN THE PRIMARY DEVELOPMENT CORRIDOR IN THE PENANG STRUCTURE PLAN (2020)
1. The Tanjong Bunga Residents’ Association (TBRA) and many other residents of Tanjong Bunga are of the opinion that, on planning grounds, the inclusion of Tanjong Bunga in the Primary Development Corridor in the current Penang Structure Plan 2020, is flawed.
Tanjong Bunga was clearly placed in the Secondary Development Corridor when the draft Penang Structure Plan was exhibited for public comment in 2006. TBRA and the residents who went for the public hearing raised no objections and accepted that draft. When the Penang Structure Plan was gazetted in 2007, a diagram showed that Tanjong Bunga had been incorrectly placed in the Primary Development Corridor while the text of the Structure Plan still stated that Tanjong Bunga is in the Secondary Corridor. This means that, at some point, the diagram in the Structure Plan was changed without any consultation with the public.

2. This placing of Tanjong Bunga in the Primary Development Corridor is wrong on three counts:
  1. Internal contradiction between text and diagram
There is an obvious internal contradiction in the Penang Structure Plan as the text and diagram say different things. In the diagram, Tanjong Bunga has actually disappeared; Tanjong Bunga became part of Tanjong Tokong under the Primary Development Corridor but the text, on the other hand, says that Tanjong Bunga is in the Secondary Development Corridor. The Town and Country Planning Act states when the text and diagram are in contradiction, the text takes precedence over a diagram, since the Structure Plan is a document of policy and guidelines while the diagram’s function is merely to illustrate the text.
  1. Lack of due process for changes to the Draft Structure PlanThe proper process for changing the Structure Plan was not followed, as required by the Town and Country Planning Act. Due process under the Act requires any major change has to be exhibited again. The change would be invalid if this were not done.
  1. Tanjong Bunga is marked as Tanjong Tokong in the amended diagram
The location of Tanjong Bunga in the changed diagram in the Structure Plan does not follow the gazetted boundary of Tanjong Bunga in the Survey Plan where it starts from Tanjong Bunga Park and extends to Mar Vista Resort. Similarly, the location of Tanjong Tokong also does not follow the gazetted boundary in the Survey Plan. The amended diagram erroneously placed and marked Tanjong Tokong in the location of Tanjong Bunga.
3. TBRA brought up the issue of the change in Corridors to the State government authorities and was told that if it did not agree, it should go to court to ask for an interpretation. TBRA proceeded forthwith to file a case in court for a declaration. It was a straightforward case of trying to set right what appeared to be an "administrative'' error or oversight. However, the case was dismissed because the court accepted the defendant’s (State) allegation that the case was filed too late. As a result, the court has not adjudicated the substantive issues of the case and the merits of the case were not considered and remain unresolved.

See full document in PDF: http://goo.gl/OrdlYg

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Tanjong Bunga's SORE THUMB, revisited

From my window, I can monitor “ progress” on the Sore Thumb. While there were bulldozers at work three months ago, there has not been any discernible activity for at least the last month.  One wonders why? Out of concern for public objection? Certainly not.  Out of fear of reprisal from the State government? Impossible. Has a STOP WORK order finally been issued? Unlikely.

To backtrack a little.  The area dubbed the Sore Thumb is located on the beach in Tanjong Bunga. It started a long time ago, as of 2002 when hundreds of truckloads of rocks, soil and discarded building materials were dumped into the sea, creating a humpbacked jetty. In fact it was an ILLEGAL reclamation of the sea in front of the Copthorne Hotel and just next to Penang Swimming Club. By law, all reclamations belong to the government.
TBRA led a public outcry, when it appeared that this jetty might be privatized. The then Tanjong Country Club had submitted plans for a marina. TBRA objected to these plans and asked the government to make the Thumb into a public park.  The population of Tanjong Bunga has been increasing and space for recreation has been decreasing. Much of the access to the beach along Tanjong Bunga road has become inaccessible to the public. For a good walk or jog, residents have to drive to the Botanical Gardens which does not help the traffic congestion.
When the Cove was built, the 4 huge towers became known as Tanjong Bunga’s Four Sore Fingers and with the Sore Thumb that made a hand saying: STOP!
Coastal Public Park Proclaimed
In 2010, TBRA organized a very well attended “tea-party” where over a hundred residents claimed the Thumb as a public park. The huge gate that illegally blocked access to State land was opened and the residents proudly marched to the Thumb. Our Tanjong Bunga ADUN led the march. TBRA chairman proclaimed the Coastal Park.

Friday, August 08, 2014

Temple Construction at Chee Seng Gardens, Tg. Bunga, Penang


Preamble


Chee Seng Gardens was established since the mid-1960s. There were approximately 80 semi-detached houses. There was open access to the surrounding areas made up of low hills. This entire surrounding area has been subsequently built over with numerous high rise apartments. The open space(s) have thus been replaced with concrete and steel. Since grown with the addition of 2 and 3 storey houses.

To the best of our knowledge there is only one (1) open public area of land measuring approximately 8,000sf.



The Present Scenario


There was an unwelcome surprise recently to see an approved development for a Temple a on a portion to the small open space. Needless to say, the space will spill over beyond the temple boundary. The site is right at the entrance into the Chee Seng Garden area.This is located at the road junction of Jalan Chan SiewTeong and Jalan Chee Seng 10.



We raised the following issues:-

  1. Why was there no prior notice of the intended construction given to residents in and around the said area as per City Council guidelines?
  1. FYI there was an enquiry by the residents dated 26 February 2014 when there appeared to be some construction works to come. ( Appendix 1 ) The response from

MPPP dated 3 March 2014 (Aduan 02783/02/14) that the matter was being

investigated. (Appendix 2 )

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Petition To Take Down the Telco Tower at Sekolah Menengah Pendidikan Khas Persekutuan

We are rejecting the telco tower that was set up at Sekolah Menengah Pendidikan Khas Persekutuan last week on 600H Jalan Lembah Permai, 11200 Tanjung Bungah. The telecommunication operator did not apply for residential consent before setting up the tower. There is fear in us of being exposed to health hazards and electromagnetic radiation continuously for the next many years. Therefore, we insist that the tower to be taken down.

Many well established international studies have shown the health hazard of the electromagnetic radiation from the Mobile Phone Telco Towers. The tower should not be located at or near the residential areas, schools and hospitals. Certain scientist even suggested that the towers should not be less than 300 meters from schools or residential area.

We are extremely concerned about the health effects and risk of Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Radiation (RF) from the antennas. Majority of the residents around this area objected to the radiation exposure and the nearness of this tower.    
There is a robust and ongoing controversy over many aspects of RF health effects. No one disagrees that serious health hazards occur when living cells in the body are heated. This happens when high intensity RF exposure (just like in a microwave oven), scientists are currently still investigating the health hazards of low intensity exposure. Low intensity exposure is exposure which does not raise the temperature of the living cells in the body.

The telecommunications industry claims cellular antennas are safe because the radiation they produce is too weak to cause heating, a "thermal effect." They point to "safety standards" from groups such as ANSI/IEEE or ICNIRP to support their claims. But these groups have explicitly stated that their claim of “safe levels of exposure” is only based on thermal levels.

There is a large body of internationally accepted scientific evidence which points to the existence of non thermal effects of microwave radiation. The issue at the present time is not whether such evidence exists, but rather what weight to give it.
 
Non-thermal effects are recognized by experts on RF to have potential health hazards. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of USA has rejected the current (ANSI/IEEE) safety standards because they are based on thermal effects alone. Many scientists and physicians question the safety of exposure to RF. The CSIRO study, for example, notes that there are no clear cutoff levels at which low intensity exposure has no effect, and that the results of ongoing studies will take years to analyze. "As long as it has not been scientifically proven that electromagnetic radiation is without danger, it should be considered that it is probably dangerous."

The BioInitiative Report which is the work of leading scientists who have reviewed over 2000 reports on Electro-Magnetic Fields (EMFs) and health, states that “The existing public safety standards limiting radiation levels in nearly every country of the world look to be thousands of times too lenient. Change is needed”. Report: available at www.bioinitiative.org. Title: BioInitiative: A Rationale for a Biologically-based Public Exposure Standard for Electromagnetic Fields (ELF and RF).

The potential long term health effects are much more worrying especially when we consider that our children are especially vulnerable due to the fact that they have thinner skulls, immature immune systems and soft bones allowing stem cells in the bone marrow to absorb microwaves (Cherry 1998).

We demand to remove the mentioned telco tower. Enclosed are the lists of signatures taken around the area, wanting the tower to be taken down. Your immediate response and action are very much needed and appreciated.

Thank you

Yours sincerely,
Residents of Lembah Permai and Concord Garden

Friday, November 30, 2012

Gotong Royong to clean up public beach at Copthorne Hotel Tanjung Bungah


URGENT  exercise - discover- come !
Saturday morning, 1 December 2012 at 8 am
Please come and support a Gotong Royong on the beach below the Copthorne Hotel and the Cove (public access via stairs in between these two buildings) to assert the public nature of the beach as well as the 'Sore Thumb' which will remain “SORE” until it is gazetted as:
Tanjong Bunga Coastal Park.
MPPP & TBRA organise this clean-up on Saturday morning,
1 December 2012 at 8 am
Refreshments will be provided - courtesy Copthorne Hotel
Pressure on State Government and MPPP must continue in order to safeguard the Tanjong Bunga Coastal Park. This reclaimed land has still not been gazetted to ensure it is reserved for public use. There are rumours galore that Tanjong 1 (that huge new towerblock right on the sea) is still eyeing the reclamation to develop it for private use.

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

New Recreational Parks

A number of new recreational parks for the public have been created recently by developers in the Seri Tanjung Pinang and Lembah Permai area. These parks are designed by professional landscape designers. However we hope that the public who use these parks do not litter the grounds or vandalise the play equipment.

Sadly, there are many squatters and illegal construction on the beach front next to the park. Yes these people can enjoy their seafront villas free on state land!


Ideal for Picnics


This is an extract from Star Metro North of November 1, 2012.

There is a new 1.76ha park in Tanjung Tokong just right for families. UNKNOWN to many people, there is a new recreational spot in Penang where families can spend quality time outdoors.
Fun playground: Children can have watery fun with water spraying out from these buckets at the Seri Tanjung Pinang public recreational park in Penang.
The 1.76ha Seri Tanjung Pinang public recreational park in Tanjung Tokong on the island’s north coast was completed a few months ago but had not been attracting big crowds yet as it is still largely unknown.
Its facilities include a jogging and cycling track, a children’s playground and toilets. The sprawling grounds are also ideal for picnics.
The park, which is developed by Eastern & Oriental (E&O) Bhd as a corporate social responsibility project, is located within the Seri Tanjung Pinang housing and commercial area which is developed by the company. It is behind the Tesco Hypermarket there.
E&O general manager for construction management Zawawi Yusop said the park is open to group activities but organisations and schools have to first seek permission from the company by calling 04-8913311.
“There are no rental charges but they are refrained from holding any political or religious activities there,” he said after accompanying Penang Local Government andd Traffic Management Committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow on a visit to the park recently.
The park, which is open from 7am to 7pm daily, is also the starting point of the 1.8km promenade which connects it to the Straits Quay commercial retail outlet.
Chow said the opening of the new park would encourage more people to come outdoors to enjoy nature.
“With a huge recreational park like this, nearby kindergartens and schools can organise outdoor activities here for their students.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Higher Density only for Transit Oriented Developments(TODs)?

Penang Forum had a meeting with the MPPP President(YDP) recently on 18 October 2012. This update is from former Municipal Councillor Lim Kah Cheng. On the issue of the density of 87 units per acre, the YDP confirmed that MPPP has put on hold applications for density of 87 units which have not yet been approved. Rationale: the draft local plan  had recommended that the 87 units be only for those (developments) along transit nodes and since there is uncertainty as to where  the transit nodes are and that the recommended monorail and PORR in the draft local plan are not happening, the higher density of 87 units should be put on hold. Density should be considered together with the transport master plan. 

(Realistically, we are not out of the woods yet because the developers are lobbying members of the state govt to pressurize MPPP to reverse this decision. We members of the public must step up the pressure because MPPP's recommendation to SPC is pending a final decision.)

On the complaints to MPPP of the rivers in Lembah Permai and the one next to 1 tanjung/Penang Swimming Club being filled up by developers,  Dato YDP promised to call for a meeting with JPS and JKR and DO and PForum reps to resolve these issues. She also asked her engineering dept head to monitor the situations at those 2 places.


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Take the polluters to task !



Press conference: Wed. 10 Oct. 11 am Copthorne Beach

by YB Teh and TBRA (Tanjong Bunga Residents’ Association)

The Tanjung Bunga Residents’ Association together with YB Teh, ADUN for Tanjong Bunga called for a Press conference to highlight the pollution at the Tanjung 1 project, a huge high rise condominium development between the Cove and the Penang Swimming Club.

Erosion from Tanjong 1 construction site muddies the sea

Monday, July 02, 2012

Update for TBRA – 1 July 2012

Things are happening in Penang. Change is in the air. One of our members recently suggested a rate-payers strike to show discontent with the way MPPP listens more to developers than to local residents. And there is more, much more!
Housing.  A report by the Consumers’ Association of Penang: “CAP: Only the rich can afford Penang homes” (Star, 6 June) led to many other articles debating whether there was shortage of housing or not? There are so many un-occupied units. Do foreigners buy condo’s to live or speculate? Do developers have no choice but to build on hillsides because there is a shortage of land and housing on Penang Island or are they only building there to sell to speculators?

Uphill battle for residents

Penang politicians say that the hills are alive with the sound of music but angry residents in Tanjung Bungah think the hills are dying and their once serene suburb has become unlivable.

By Joceline Tan  Sunday July 1, 2012 http://thestar.com.my/columnists/story.asp?file=/2012/7/1/columnists/joceline/11553488&sec=joceline
(Also see a quick, same-day, reply from the Penang Chief Minister  http://limguaneng.com/index.php/2012/07/01/hill-development-projects-putting-the-record-straight-from-stars-dishonest-efforts-to-rewrite-history-encn/)

THE rugged-looking Teh Yee Cheu, assemblyman for Tanjung Bungah, used to be dubbed the “bicycle YB” because he had once cycled to a Penang Legislative Assembly sitting. His DAP bosses did not quite approve of it but he received a lot of publicity from the media and went from an unknown to being noticed.
But these days, Teh’s name is more synonymous with the “dying hills” in his constituency. The hills of Tanjung Bungah have become a prickly issue in Penang politics and Teh is feeling the heat.

The DAP politician has been under immense pressure from his constituents to act on their complaints about the string of development projects coming up in Tanjung Bungah’s hilly terrain. Hillslope development and its environmental costs have become the No. 1 issue in this upmarket coastal strip.
Stolen charm: The once scenic coastline of Tanjung Bungah now resembles a concrete fortress and the fear is that things will get worse because there are more projects in the pipeline.
 
Tanjung Bungah, for those who are not from Penang, is an affluent residential belt on the island’s northeast. It occupies a narrow stretch of land with the hills on one side and the sea on the other. It is a much sought-after location and as land grew more scarce, the trend has been towards building high-rise and high-end apartments on hill slopes.

Sunday, July 01, 2012

Hill 'killed' by development


By SHARANJIT SINGH AND LOOI SUE CHERN
http://www.nst.com.my/nation/general/hill-killed-by-development-1.96192

SHOCKING: DAP assemblyman takes reporters to see construction site above the 75m safety zone

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GEORGE TOWN: THE sight at the top of a hill just behind the wet market at Mount Erskine is shocking to say the least.

Gone are the trees and the highest point has been levelled. The hilltop is littered with granite rock which was blasted and dug out of the ground in preparation for the construction of posh apartments and villas.

The project was abandoned in the early 1990s but was revived two years ago with work now in full swing. Tanjung Bungah assemblyman Teh Yee Cheu took the New Straits Times to see how the hill "was being killed" with little or no monitoring of what was going on.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Gong Xi Fa Cai ! Past and Upcoming Events


TBRA wishes all its members and friends Gong Xi Fa Cai !



TBRA Car Sticker


Many events have taken place
over the past few months, particularly in December. Before we brief you, PLEASE note 2 important dates !
  • You are invited to the Official Launch of the 'Pearl Hill View Point Park' on Tuesday 31st January from 5.30pm to 6.30pm (top of the hill)

  • Come and learn how to assess a Local Plan on Saturday, 11 Febr. 4-6pm (Straits Regency meeting room, Chee Seng Gardens)

Now chronologically, here is a summary of what your Association did in December:

  • On 3 December, Lemba Permai residents took to the street in protest against two 32 storey blocks planned for their quiet low-rise residential neighbourhood. (see TBRA blogsite for pictures and story)

  • Several TBRA Committee members attended the full day Penang Forum on 18 December.

  • On that same Sunday another “gotong royong” took place on Pearl Hill.

  • Earlier in the month, the Dalat School students (and parents) contributed to the improvement and development of the Park with clearing, making paths, carrying & laying bricks for more permanent concrete paths, planting trees, etc. TBRA is grateful to them.

  • We have printed a TBRA car sticker – If you promise to stick it in your car, pick one up at the Esso station, from Andrew at Straits Mini Market or from any Committee member you know. (See picture above)

“Pearl Hill View Point Park”

On 27 December 2011 there was a Dialogue with MPPP on this park. TBRA and ADUN YB Teh have long been advocating for this state land to be gazetted as public. The State government agrees now that the 20 acre hilltop is a Public Park. This was confirmed on 16 Jan. 2012 when a Committee was appointed to see to the park’s development and maintenance. The Morning Walkers, JKKK, the Tua Pek Kong Temple, Dalat School and TBRA are on the Committee. MPPP- Pengarah Akbar (Jabatan Rekreasi, Pelancongan & Perhubungan Antarabangsa) is advisor and counterpart. Two councillors (YB Yee Cheu Teh and YB Liew Chin Tong) are also advisors. The Committee is set up in accordance with the LA21 (Local Agenda 21)


Official Launch of the PHVPP. A Greener, Cleaner, Safer Park

Tuesday, 31st January 2012 from 5-30pm-6-30pm at the landing area at the base of the Pearl Hill View Point Park, near the Temple. There will be banners, food and drinks. Please come so MPPP can see Tanjong Bunga really needs and welcomes this Park. All are invited.


Training on how to read and understand a Local Plan

Remember the Structure Plan, the Primary and Secondary Corridor issues?

If we want to have a say in what our town will look like 10 years from now, we need to be ready to comment on the Local Plan as soon as it becomes available for viewing. Most likely the time for giving comments will be limited so we had better start preparing now. (For instance right now the draft Special Area Plan (SAP) for the Penang Botanic Gardens - with 3 more concrete structures…- is only available for less than a month.)

A well-known architect and town planner (with a soft spot for Tg Bunga) is willing to donate his time to teach TBRA how to read a sample Local Plan and we are jumping on the occasion.
  • Date: 11 February, Saturday afternoon, TBRA invites its members to be trained, 4 to 6 pm.
  • Venue: Straits Regency Condo meeting room (1st floor) top of Chee Seng Gardens.

Hope to see many of you then.

TBRA Secretary

Friday, December 23, 2011

Lemba Permai Residents took to the street on 3 December


Lorong Lembah Permai Empat 'Street Dialogue' of 03.12.2011



They were angry about new plans by Sri Setia developer (Boon Siew) who now proposes building two apartment blocks 32 stories high & one apartment block 9 stories high at ‘Permai Village’, in Tanjong Bunga (directly behind Lorong Lembah Permai 4) and adjacent to Nineteen, Permai Village and 2Permai new houses. Total additional apartment units would be over 500.
The new plans have not yet been approved and quite a number of residents went to express their opposition to the plans at a Council meeting.

They have the following concerns:

  • The developers proposed additional units are way too excessive in number.

  • The proposed apartment blocks are far too high for an area that was originally zoned for single storey houses.

  • The addition of thousands of vehicles will add to local traffic jams & density – already at bursting point.

  • The infrastructure cannot support these additional numbers. Parking will definitely spill over into neighboring streets.

  • A dead-end road in a residential area of LLP4 has been opened-up to traffic in readiness to accommodate anticipated high volumes of construction & apartment traffic.

  • The flow of Sungai Kelian on the proposed site has been altered; sections of the river have been filled-in, creating stagnant pools, a breeding ground for mosquitoes.

  • Some of the residents were not notified of the Objection Hearing although it is a legal requirement.
  • Despite requests to MPPP President for a dialogue regarding the objections, no response has been received sofar.

This proposed change of plans by Boon Siew will affect residents every day; it will also affect those who bought houses in Permai Village under original plans (false promises). So, find out more about this development, share our concerns & join our protest. With support from TBRA and our local ADUN there was an excellent turn-out on 3 December 2011.

Rubbish has been used as back-fill at the site



Proposed change of plan by Sri Setia







Sungai Kelian back-fill & water seepage