The recently opened ‘Rhythmic Water Fountain’ has been drawing whole families to view it every night. A welcome change for city folk after their dinner in town.
MBI has planted trees along the pedestrian walkway on many roads in the city centre. It is pleasant to see greenery in the midst of a concrete jungle. The trees with tall slender barks and different shapes of bushy tops look beautiful. It is nice to see real trees instead of planting plastic trees as was done previously in some areas.
These trees absorb carbon dioxide emissions from the vehicles and produce oxygen making the atmosphere healthy. They provide shade and also a place for birds to nest in the town area.
The trees especially in front of KFC in Jalan Dato Onn Jaafar have grown tall and are not only beautiful but also provide shade at the busy junction. Similar sites exist in a number of other areas.
The down side is that in a few of places, the height of the bush is very low and pedestrians have to be careful not to hurt their heads. One example is the tree in front of Kamdar Store on Jalan Raja Musa Aziz. There are also locations where the trees obstruct pedestrians from walking.
The trees are planted all over the city and I have just highlighted a couple of them which were brought to my attention. The idea is very good and appreciated by the residents. However, the Landscaping Department must inspect them and ensure they are properly maintained and safe for pedestrians to walk.
Years ago, there was a mini rubbish dump beside the junction of Jalan Bunga Susun Kelapa and Jalan Bunga Raya in Pasir Pinji, Ipoh. Irresponsible people came to dump rubbish at the small, empty plot of land there. They came from all over, on foot, on bicycles or motorbikes, in cars and pick-up trucks to dump kitchen waste, garden refuse and building renovation debris. MBI could not solve the problem as the litterers came faster than the MBI garbage trucks could take the rubbish away. As soon as a garbage truck left, the place was littered again with stray dogs scavenging the garbage – causing a stench and litter all over the place.
Then an MBI lady-worker took the initiative to plant a few crinum lily plants and some wild taro plants around that mini dump site. She must have taken the plants – plant by plant – on, either, her bicycle or motorbike from her kampong and the jungle fringe. She made sure that the plants would not obstruct the view of drivers stopping at the junction proper of Jalan Bunga Susun Kelapa and Jalan Bunga Raya. She planted a few taller plants away from the junction to prevent small lorries from reversing to dump building renovation debris. She would spend time, after her road-cleaning chores, to nurture the plants and to clear that area of weeds and litter. Soon, that ugly, stinking mini dump was no more. It became a beautiful mini garden! Unfortunately, she was transferred from that part of Pasir Pinji, a few years later.
Now, a motorist has written to the MBI to remove the plants. I guess the complainant just wants to have a clear view, from a few cars back from the junction proper, so that he could just shoot out of the junction without stopping. The complainant has no cause to complain, as he needs to stop at the junction proper where he would be able to have a very clear view of traffic coming from Jalan Bunga Raya. All motorists must stop at the junction proper.
I hope MBI will not entertain that complaint but help to maintain the area by spraying weedkiller to kill the lallang and weeds every once in a while, instead. Keep up the good work of that unique worker. MBI should trace the lady manual worker who had the innovative idea to get rid of that horrible, stinking, eye-sore of a dump and commend her for her extraordinary work. I guess she must be continuing her excellent work in other areas too, to keep Ipoh clean and green. Well done!
The library has come up with an ingenious way to prevent theft. They have installed a railing at the parking lot with chains. Motorcyclists can secure their bikes to the chains and prevent them from being stolen.
When I was at the library, three motorcycles were parked and only one driver had secured his bike with the chain. A fourth motorcyclist came and parked his bike, but did not chain it. The library can only provide the facility; it is up to the drivers to make use of it.
Other places can also implement this system to prevent bikes from being stolen from their premises.
Following a letter from a resident published on June 1 (IE Issue 144), Hospital Fatimah is taking measures to improve the congestion of traffic around its neighbourhood caused by the increasing number of patients to the Hospital and the limited parking lots within its grounds. In a letter addressed to neighbourhood residents, the Hospital stated that, although it has no control over where patients park their cars outside the Hospital, it is taking steps to address the issue by:
Much like the other private hospitals in Ipoh, Hospital Fatimah shows that it has recognised and borne the responsibility of improving the parking situation.
Another major parking problem is at the Hospital Tuanku Bainun (General Hospital). It is hoped that the management of the General Hospital are taking similar measures to alleviate their patients’ parking problems.
I often hear complaints from residents that no action is taken by MBI on owners of unkempt vacant land near their houses. Their main fear is of snakes and other reptiles living there. Frequently the excuse given by MBI for not taking action is that they cannot locate the owner.
However recently, the agent who looks after a large plot of vacant land adjacent to Lorong Pari, said that the owners were summoned by MBI to clean up the place which is overgrown with weeds and plants. I told the tractor driver not to bull doze the mature trees. Many birds nest on the trees and it is home to wild fowl. The place has been cleared. MBI does take action; but it is slow and selective.
Meanwhile, MBI must provide written guidelines on clearing of vacant land to ensure that mature trees are not cut and reptiles and other animals living there are not killed. The land cleared is next to the river and there are snakes, iguanas and monitor lizards. These must be caught and released in a safe area. This must be the responsibility of MBI. We must not forget that all animals have the right to live and their habitats must not be indiscriminately destroyed.
The troublesome railings at the busy pedestrian crossing in Jalan Hospital-Fair Park, whose presence was given the thumbs-down by Jerry Francis (Ipoh Echo Issue 129), were removed by MBI no sooner as the matter was highlighted. In a letter to Ipoh Echo dated October 7, the Council replied. Here is the English translation:
“The Council takes cognizance of the problem and has acted to remove the railings at that part of the road.”
The Council’s timely action is appreciated.
Reader Sundralingam’s comment on Ipoh Echo’s website regarding Ipoh City Council’s propensity to change street names at the drop of a hat had elicited a response from the council. Sundralingam’s fear was the likelihood that Jalan Caldwell would undergo a name change.
William John Caldwell was a tin miner and co-founder of Sengat Estate in Kampung Kepayang, Ipoh. Caldwell was also an agent for the Straits Trading Company, established in 1886 dealing with tin-smelting business in Ipoh. He had, therefore, contributed to the growth of Ipoh in the early years.
In a letter to Ipoh Echo, dated August 22, the council had this to say. Here is the English translation:
“The changing of street names is subjected to existing council by-laws. It is also based on the needs of the area in question. Jalan Caldwell shall remain Jalan Caldwell, as an application for a name-change by the street naming sub-committee was rejected by the council on June 15.”
Ipoh City Council’s action to allay the fear is appreciated. Let us have more of this, MBI.
MBI has installed additional equipment in the children’s playground in Merdeka Garden. Previously the field was rather empty but with the new equipment in the centre, it now looks colourful and inviting.
The new facilities should now bring children out from the confines of their homes, and provide an opportunity for the children and parents to make new friends. However, it may be advisable for the Residents Committee to take the initiative of educating the people not to damage public property and for adults to leave the play facilities to children only.