Over-development can create ‘slums’, KL residents’ group claims

Selamatkan Kuala Lumpur said sustainable development was essential in maintaining a balance between social and economic growth. — Reuters pic
Selamatkan Kuala Lumpur said sustainable development was essential in maintaining a balance between social and economic growth. — Reuters pic

KUALA LUMPUR, March 1 ― Property oversupply in the city centre can lead to lower property value and modern slums if borrowers default on their mortgages and are forced to lower rentals, a coalition of Kuala Lumpur residents claimed today.

In their call for the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) to gazette the KL City Plan 2020 (KLCP2020) draft, Selamatkan Kuala Lumpur (SKL) said sustainable development was essential in maintaining a balance between social and economic growth.

“An oversupply situation will bring economic hardship when borrowers default on their mortgages which in turn create social issues at the micro level.

“Property owners will also be forced to accept low lease rentals to help cover their mortgage payments. This in turn will diminish property values and create ‘modern slums’,” SKL president Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Abdul Rahman said in a statement yesterday.

Abdul Aziz said though SKL supports Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor's pledge for a more conducive city, he said the absence of an approved KL City Local Plan would make it a slogan without substance.

“Residents of Kuala Lumpur city demand that the Federal Territory Minister and DBKL uphold the law and fulfill their duties to gazette the Draft Kuala Lumpur City Plan 2020 (KLCP2020) before further damage from the absence of an approved plan becomes irreversible.

“For Malaysia to be called a developed nation and its capital Kuala Lumpur as a world class city, it must have a Local Plan which uses international city planning as its framework. Only then can we truly claim to be working towards building a world class city rated among the best,” he said.

On February 22, the group said it was prepared to take DBKL to court if the Draft KL City Plan 2020 is not gazetted.

SKL said the continued inaction by DBKL shows its failure in its duties by not gazetting the draft plan as per the Federal Territory (Planning) Act 1982.

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