Residents of Tanjung Bunga packed a press conference this morning to protest against a Boon Siew Group project that will see two 50-storey buildings, one 49-storey building and one 34-storey building sprouting in the area.
The project is located between Jalan Sungai Kelian and Jalan Loh Poh Heng.
The residents claim the project will have an effective density of 49 units per acre whereas the Penang Structure Plan 2007 only allows 15 units per acre for the area. A lawyer at the press conference said MBPP policies and guidelines cannot override the text in the Structure Plan, which was gazetted. The text should also take precedence over the rough sketch in the Plan which was surreptitiously amended to show Tanjung Bunga as a primary corridor with a higher density, said the lawyer.
Even if the area is considered a primary corridor, the maximum density allowed under the Structure Plan is 30 units per acre. The “60 per cent affordable housing” cannot be added to this maximum density, said the lawyer. Instead, any “affordable housing” should be included in the maximum density allowed.
Moreover, strata title holders in the adjacent Desa Embun Emas did not receive individual notices informing them that they could object to the project.
The Town and Country Planning Act requires the MPPP to serve a notice on “the owners of the neighbouring lands” (within 20 metres) to inform them of their rights to object, said the lawyer. Owner is defined as “the registered proprietor of the land”.
The Management Corporation is the registered proprietor of the common property, whilst the individual unit owners are the registered proprietors of the units (which of course includes the land on which the units are constructed), added the lawyer. “The ‘management corporation’ and the ‘unit owners’ are separate legal entities. They have different addresses for service of notice. Hence, in my view, all should be given notice to object.”
Present at the press conference were Desa Embun Emas residents committee chairman George Lee, Tanjung Bunga Adun Teh Yee Cheu, Penang Island City Councillor Syerleena Abdul Rashid and representatives of the Tanjung Bunga Residents Association, including its new and immediate past president. Activists Dr Cecilia Ng and Susan Siew were also present.
So far, over 1,000 Tanjung Bunga residents have signed a petition opposing this highrise high-density project.
An online petition has just been launched as well.