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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Will an MRT affect the price of your properties?

File picture shows MRT and surrounding properties. - The Star

PETALING JAYA: While some property consultants and analysts have been bullish on the overall impact of the mass rapid transit (MRT) on property prices, another group of property consultants has reservations about the blanket “price hike” touted by their counterparts and other parties.

This second group of property consultants, together with sources familiar with the project, have an alternative view.

Their conclusion is: not all properties affected by the Sg Buloh-Kajang line will have a positive impact. In fact, there will be properties that will have an adverse impact.

A source who declined to be named said: “If you can hear it, see it, feel the vibration, but cannot access it, your property will be negatively impacted. You want it (MRT) close, but not too close.”

The 50km line that begins from Sg Buloh will splice through the monorail and light rail transit (LRT) in the city and head south towards Kajang, affecting a total 91,900 properties along the way. Of these, 82,700 units, or 90%, will be residential units with a total population of about 341,000. About 40% of these are located in the Sg Buloh-Semantan area, and 46% in the Cheras-Kajang area.

It will be the country's largest infrastructure project, reportedly costing RM36.6bil.

A source said: “Logically speaking, people should not oppose the MRT or any form of public transport. But, if it is going to affect your standard of living, either by the noise, vibration or visual impact, then it is logical for them to oppose it.

“Imagine this: you live in a quiet, serene area for years, and all of a sudden you have the MRT line running in front or behind your property. Your serenity is broken, your standard of living is negatively impacted, and so will the value of your property.”

The noise level will be tremendous. The MRT begins from 6am to midnight. In time to come, the MRT will run every 1.8 minutes.

The affected areas are Section 4 and 6 of Kota Damansara; Pelangi Damansara condominium; Taman Tun Dr Ismail; Damansara Utama; Section 17/52 Petaling Jaya; Bukit Bandaraya; Jalan Bukit Ledang; Bukit Damansara; Taman Desa Aman; Taman Connaught; and Taman Koperasi.

According to the executive summary posted on the Department of Environment website, as the line enters Kota Damansara, which is predominantly residential and remains so until TTDI, the line visual, vibration and noise level will be significant to properties in that area. And as the line enters the residential area of Cheras, the visual impact, noise and vibration level will also impact negatively on the property values there.

“Most of the measured noise levels exceeded the recommended limit for suburban residential area and urban residential area,” the executive summary said.

Reports that property prices would go up by between 100% and 500% were “too bullish”, said the group of property consultants. A property developer who has several projects in Kota Damansara said the visual impact, noise and vibration would affect values negatively.

Last week, the Land Public Transport Commission (LPTC) and Prasarana exhibited the alignment at Mid-Valley Megamall. They are seeking a location in Petaling Jaya to exhibit the alignment.

The MRT route will be displayed for three months at local authority offices in the Klang Valley, in Bangsar LRT station and at LPTC in KL Sentral. The environmental impact assessment will be displayed for one month from Feb 14 to March 14.

By The Star

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