Kg Baru needs a new plan for redevelopment

THE billion ringgit redevelopment plans for Kampung Baru, a Malay village sitting on prime Kuala Lumpur (KL) land, have been an unrealised ambition of past governments for more than 40 years with no solution in sight.

The official name of Kampung Baru is Malay Agricultural Settlement (MAS), which reflected its status as a gift for the first settlers of the land, and thereon, their descendants’ inability to agree with successive governments on how best to realise the value of their land.

The settlement’s honorary secretary Shamsuri Suradi said the latest development plans crafted by the last government are likely to meet the same fate of previous plans made in 1975, 1985 and 1990.

He said all these plans for the settlement have failed because the agencies have no long-term solutions due to the changes in government leadership.

He said even the purpose-built Kampung Baru Development Corp (KBDC) failed to develop even a single piece of land since it was set up in 2012.

“At the beginning of the establishment of KBDC, the slogan at that time was to develop Kampung Baru as a township of Malays in the city of KL, but now it has changed. Now, its all land purchases and land acquisition.

“The majority of Kampung Baru landowners are really confused about what the agency is really about. They are carrying out hastily drawn plans under pressure from the minister, not to help the people,” he told The Malaysian Reserve (TMR).

Current Federal Territories (FT) Minister Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim told the Dewan Rakyat recently that the development will be “organic” and carried out in phases according to 44 identified land blocks.

Shamsuri said the involvement of the FT minister, the Land and Mines Office, the Civil and Shariah Courts, City Hall of KL, KBDC and MAS must be brought together to resolve land issues and maybe then create a workable plan.

At the time of writing, KBDC did not respond to questions sent by TMR.

Shamsuri said one of the stumbling blocks to development, the definitive list of owners must be the first priority, beginning with land-owners updating their claims.

“This needs to be mobilised in a certain period until all owners are complete with the latest grants that will facilitate the process of buying and selling or development.

“During this period as well, one party needs to focus on phased development in Kampung Baru, where the ownership problem has been resolved. I believe this can be done.”

Shamsuri suggested the government, or KBDC, to convince owners of the benefits of their planning, the economic impact as well as land opportunities in Kampung Baru.

“It takes time and patience because at the end of the day, the owner will be satisfied if KBDC is really honest to carry out this task.

“All members of KBDC need to be taught in the spirit of ‘to win the heart and mind’ of the people of Kampung Baru,” he said.

Meanwhile, Juwai IQI group co-founder and CEO Kashif Ansari said the new plan will help Kampung Baru move further along the path towards redevelopment into a modern township in a way that is good for the owners and heirs and the city as a whole.

“The goal is to transform old villages to a new modern skyline served by the infrastructure that people who live in such a central city location need. Kampung Baru could become one of the most vibrant townships.

“The plan will unleash the value of land in the area, so owners can reap the reward and uplift their lives. We see it as something positive to the township and the people there,” he told TMR.

Commenting on the ministry’s request for RM148 million under the 12th Malaysia Plan, Kashif said the funding is sufficient for now.

“It demonstrates the government is serious about the plan and willing to put in place the necessary resources. Most likely, over time, the amount dedicated to the project will increase as the land gains in value and the district develops.

“The possible challenges could be that only some of the area’s residents and owners are ready to move forward with redevelopment. The new plan smartly decides to let those who are ready to move ahead with redevelopment to do so, without disturbing the others who are not prepared.”

He believes the initiative taken by the government accommodates the owners, so they benefit from the process and find their lives improved at the end of the day.

Sumber: The Malaysian Reserve