Sunday, February 21, 2016

Tg Bungah hillslopes stripped for projects

By Audrey Dermawan - 21 February 2016
GEORGE TOWN: At least two hillslopes are being stripped for development projects in Tanjung Bungah.

Signboards put up at the sites revealed that one was for road- works in Jalan Solok Tanjung Bungah while the other was for a 50-storey affordable housing project in Lorong Lembah Permai.

Checks by the New Sunday Times on Friday, accompanied by Tanjung Bungah assemblyman Teh Yee Cheu, showed earthworks were in full swing at the project sites.

Heavy machinery was also spotted.

Teh said although the projects were being carried out at less than 76m above sea level, their steepness raised concerns. Bald patches, not covered by plastic sheets, were visible from a distance.

He said earthworks in Jalan Solok Tanjung Bungah started two months ago while those in Lorong Lembah Permai started four months ago.

“Other than myself, the Tanjung Bunga residents’ association also objected to the projects 10 years ago.

“Following the brouhaha, things went quiet for a while. It looks like the projects are in full swing.

“We hope the authorities will minimise the impact of the construction on the surrounding areas.”

Teh questioned whether there was a guarantee that the earthworks would not affect residents of Chee Seng Garden.

“Have we forgotten how the residents there were affected by mud floods on Sept 6, 2008, after nearby hills were stripped by two developers?

“It was the first time the neighbourhood was flooded in four decades. “Can we be sure that when it rains, mud water from the construction site will not flow downhill and flood the houses at the bottom? The bald patch at the hill is visible.”

Teh lamented how the skyline from Tanjung Bungah to Batu Ferringhi had changed. He said there were no fewer than 50 high-rise buildings in the stretch with nearly 10 projects pending approval.

“I dread to think of what will happen in the event of a downpour, which can lead to a landslide.”

In his statement during the Tanjung Bungah residents’ association’s annual general meeting, which is available online, chairman Datuk Renji Sathiah said the residents of Tanjung Bungah and their neighbouring communities had seen an acceleration in the deterioration of the environment in the past year.

“The main cause of this is that the state government favours developers over the concerns of those whose quality of life is affected by the degradation of the environment.”

Renji said development, illegal constructions, massive land reclamations without environmental impact assessments and the controversial Penang Traffic Master Plan were key issues facing the people of Tanjung Bungah and Penang.

“We must counter these threats to the environment and to our quality of life.

“But to do so, we need your support and commitment.

“Regrettably, here in our neighbourhood and elsewhere in Penang, people seem to react only when faced with a problem on their doorstep.

“This has to change if we are to show solidarity on matters impacting the community.”

By Audrey Dermawan - 21 February 2016 @ 11:00 AM

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By Audrey Dermawan - 21 February 2016 @ 11:00 AM

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By Audrey Dermawan - 21 February 2016 @ 11:00 AM

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By Audrey Dermawan - 21 February 2016 @ 11:00 AM

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