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Tuesday, November 10, 2009

S’gor to redevelop PJ, Klang, Kajang

SHAH ALAM: Certain industrial and older housing enclaves in Petaling Jaya (PJ), Klang and Kajang have been identified for redevelopment in a bid by the Selangor government to enhance their land value and to create a stimulus for the state.

Selangor Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim said the regeneration exercise would kick off in PJ. Owners of buildings in “three or four” areas, among them Section 13, will be given incentives to redevelop their buildings into commercial use.

“We have written to the industries concerned to relocate. If they agree to move, they can rebuild on the existing tract of commercial property with certain densities,” Khalid told The Edge Financial Daily and in an interview here yesterday.

These industrial operations would be allowed to be relocated to other more acceptable areas in Selangor, such as those near ports, he said.

The redevelopment would be in the interest of the property owners, he said. “What we gain is that PJ will become redeveloped and vibrant. They (landowners) will make the money — the state is just making the environment conducive for them.”

Redevelopment would surely create traffic and transportation related issues, congestion being at the top. So, won’t residents complain? “In a way, yes,” conceded Khalid.

“We have to show them that we cannot leave PJ in this (current) manner; we have to convince them that we will plan for and provide facilities to reduce congestion.”

Towards this end, the state government has asked for another transportation study to be carried out, based on various increased densities in the areas concerned. This is to establish whether these higher densities are feasible. The concept of park and ride is also being considered.

According to a report in City & Country, the property pullout of The Edge weekly earlier this year, the 220-acre hub of industrial activities in Section 13 was now dotted with “limited commercial” developments in the form of modern offices and retail blocks.

Factories have been operating in Section 13 since the 1960s but in recent years, its growing potential for commercial activities could not be ignored, given its strategic location. This explained the Petaling Jaya City Council’s approval for “limited commercial” activities there, based on certain guidelines.

Meanwhile, on the revival and rehabilitation of abandoned housing in Selangor, Khalid said they had been quite successful — thanks to land value appreciation over time, resulting in people willing to pay more for the completed units.

The challenge, however, was in the selection of the best contractor or developer to complete the projects.

Some of the projects were initiated by the state government which was willing to lose “a bit” so long as the project was completed, added Khalid.

By The EDGE Malaysia (by Au Foong Yee)

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