Objections to Rezoning Exercise

Residents and owners of Permai Lake View Apartments and The Haven Lakeside Residences have submitted 800 objections, on prescribed forms, to Datuk Bandar Ipoh to officially register their displeasure over the proposed rezoning of the 1.93 acre land from “Infrastructure and Utilities” to “Kediaman”.

MH Amanjaya Properties had commenced works on this land and had advertised their QUBE Project, consisting of two towers of 15-storey high rise buildings.

Their reasons are varied:

1.  Preliminary objection:

That the amendment process has failed to comply with the provisions of The Town and Country Act 1976 as well as procedures for the amendment of a local plan. There are several areas where the procedures do not comply with existing regulations. Therefore, any changes made will be considered null and void.

2.  Adverse impact on water:

That building on the land will affect underground water which will invariably impact the quality of the water in The Haven lake.

3.  Flooding in Permai and The Haven:

That works at the said site will cause flooding to neighbouring properties. Surface water will not be able to permeate into the subsoil because of saturation caused by excess water’s inability to discharge normally.

4.  Independent geological reports raised concerns:

That two professional engineering reports show that it is dangerous to build high-rise buildings on the said land.

5.  Negative economic impact:

That the proposed development will have a negative impact on neighbouring properties’ values. It will be a disincentive for developers, investors and visitors to Perak.

6.  Last remaining land zoned for infrastructure and utilities:

That this 1.93 acres land has been gazetted for Infrastructure and Utilities and is the only land reserved for such purpose.  If this piece is used for development, there will be no reserve left for future infrastructure and utilities requirements and a water retention area.

7.  More traffic jams:

That additional traffic from this unplanned “high-ratio” development will affect traffic flow.  Existing roads will not be able to cope with an increased traffic volume.

8.  Lost trust:

That the developers of the surrounding estates have committed valuable time and resources based on the attractiveness of the surrounding land. A rezoning will result in a loss of trust in the published information. Investors’ confidence will nose-dive.

A forum was held on Tuesday, May 5 where two geological specialists presented their papers highlighting the unsuitability of the 1.93-acre land for high-rise developments, citing porous limestone slopes, underground waterways, water retention pond requirement and the like.  Panellists felt it would be most unlikely that authorities could ignore the pleas of neighbouring residents and owners, especially when it involves safety, flooding and investor interests.

A resident said that owners bought into the development based on the current zoning and that the authorities should not be empowered to change the use of land unilaterally

Eight hundred objections is a large number, probably the largest objections that Ipoh City Council has ever received on a single project.

The Council must pay heed or it would make the process of gathering comments/objections a futile exercise thus affirming the notion that the Council does not care for the people and is a law unto itself.


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