Menteri Besar Dato’ Seri DiRaja Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir initiated the groundbreaking ceremony of The Octagon recently. Together with Zambry on this auspicious occasion was State Exco for Local Government Dato’ Dr Mah Hang Soon and Perak Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (PCCCI) President Dato’ Lim Kok Cheong.
According to Dato’ Lim (above pic) the project is being undertaken by One Octagon Sdn Bhd, a company formed by PCCCI specifically to implement the project and to commemorate the contributions of towkay Yau Tet Shin, the developer who initiated the development of Ipoh New Town in 1908. The development then “consisted of 350 houses, a new market, theatre and a Mandarin school, as anchor attractions”.
Located on the site of the former Yau Tet Shin Bazaar at the junction of Jalan Raja Ekram and Jalan Theatre, the project named The Octagon, will be a 21-storey building project with three floors for a cultural mall, 14 floors of service apartments and four floors for parking lots. It is scheduled to be completed in three years time and will cost RM65 million.
Zambry, in his speech, mentioned that the State is considering gazetting the area surrounding The Octagon to become a cultural and tourism district of Ipoh.
Incidentally, the former Yau Tet Shin Market was a popular rendezvous for tourists to purchase traditional Ipoh favourites such as pomelos and groundnuts. Additionally, in the surrounding areas are located several Chinese clan houses such as the Qiong Hai Association of the Hainan community.
It is good to note that MBI’s initiative in January 2009, at a forum to redevelop the former Bazaar to inject life in the area, has finally come to fruition. With this kind of determination and perseverance there can only be one way for Ipoh to go and that is forward.