Another article was published in The Star newspaper on 2 July 2014 about the 6 new highways being built but benefiting few. It said that this is the question being asked by the residents affected by the projects. Some reasons mentioned include the fact that it cuts through some forest reserves, cuts through old housing develop, pollute the neighbourhoods, endanger pedestrians during their construction and clog up local roads. It also mentioned about the non availability of EIA, the Traffic Impact Assessment (TIA) and even the social (SIA) and environmental impact reports (EIA).
I am not sure if I should support the residents if their argument is that it cuts across the developments which has been around since 1950s. Ok, if this is the case, I think we need to look at the significance of these developments. If they form part of a very significant history, it should be preserved and there should be no changes. However, if the only reason is because this is an old development and thus should not be touched, this is very shallow indeed and the report must be done objectively by all sides, including the media, the political parties and everyone included.
The four new expressways are as follows: SUKE (Sungei Besi-Hulu Klang Expressway), DASH (Damansara-Shah Alam Elevated Expressway), EKVE (East Klang Valley Expressway) and the latest Kidex (Kinrara-Damansara Expressway). Every one of these are being opposed by the affected residents in Cheras, Kota Damansara, Ampang and Petaling Jaya. They other two which are still in progress are Serdang Kinrara Putrajaya Expressway (SKIP) and West Coast Highway (LPB).
Actually, the objections would not just happen due to these expressways. Objections would happen even if there is a new condo being built right in front of your current project and it may affect your view, cause the area to be jammed and pollute the environment during its construction. However, just as we have the right to object, the developers who bought the land has equal right to build if they are doing everything as per the local guidelines. The land owners has the right to sell their land for a premium since currently, land prices are hot.
Everything should be as transparent as possible and developers must submit and follow all necessary guidelines. Anyway, these days if they do not, within minutes, everyone would know about it via Facebook, whether it’s real news or fake news. Beyond that, if I am the affected resident, I am obliged to accept if it is proven that everything that I could do has been done. I would definitely not resort to blocking the roads or stopping the contractors from starting their work etc.Seriously, every affected party must play their part, stay objective and clear.
written on 12 June 2014
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