On Sunday mornings, traders doing business along Jalan Horley, popularly known as Memory Lane, occupy two lanes of Brewster Road (Jalan Sultan Idris Shah) at the junction, causing massive traffic jams. The area becomes unsafe for motorists and traffic comes to a crawl or stops.
While I was taking photos, a traffic policeman who was on duty on a motorcycle, complained to me and vented frustrations about the situation because MBI enforcement officers were not taking action. When I told him that I write for Ipoh Echo, he suggested that instead of writing I should meet the Mayor and complain in person.
Enforcement officers from MBI are present and I wonder why they are not doing anything. It is their duty to ensure that the traders do business within the stipulated area and not go out of it.
I urge the Mayor to pay a surprise visit to the place and see for himself the situation. He can also drive in a private car and experience the congestion and inconvenience.
Action must be taken immediately to prevent unnecessary traffic jam and enable traffic to flow smoothly.
Memory Lane the flea market on Jalan Horley, acclaimed the biggest and well known all over the country, has had a facelift with new canopies. However, a number of traders are still using their own umbrellas, spoiling the efforts from the State Government to make the place attractive to tourists.
However, there are some set-backs and the place is becoming very congested with the addition of more traders. A few irresponsible traders have set up their business in the middle of the road, blocking the movement of people. The roads adjacent to the market are jammed and parking is a problem.
In contrast, there is a popular weekend market in Bangkok which attracts tourists and locals. It covers a very big area and even has a guide book. It is crowded, but not congested and is clean. Friends of mine had an unpleasant memory. One of them threw a piece of paper on the ground and was caught and fined on the spot. This is how enforcement works there. Our enforcement people could learn a lesson from Bangkok.
The flea market was relocated to this place from Peoples’ Park because of congestion. The time has come to move to a bigger place. An ideal place would be Medan Istana which is adjacent to the present site and is a large area and the surrounding roads are not busy. The authorities must look into this. Next year is Visit Malaysia Year; let us get prepared.
Meanwhile, we must be innovative and unique to attract tourists.
A plan to upgrade the popular Sunday morning flea market known as Memory Lane called for an on-site working visit by Dato’ Hamidah Osman, Executive Councillor for Tourism recently. Memory Lane, the largest flea market in Perak, occupies the whole stretch of Jalan Horley and Jalan Lim Bo Seng. Over four hundred traders operate on the site every Sunday from 5am to noon. It is an up-and-coming tourism product, as visitors are attracted to the many varieties of goods, both new and used, sold here. It attracts an estimated ten thousand visitors every Sunday. According to Hamidah, Memory Lane is not well-presented. The authorities plan to sponsor each legal trader with a canopy and rearrange them according to the goods they sell. This could be done systematically with colour-coded canopies, measuring ten feet by ten feet. Besides enhancing the visual appeal of Memory Lane, enforcement by the city council would also be easier to carry out. This transformation would take two months to implement at a cost of RM200,000.