RFPs to benefit moneyed class?


The state government has issued a flurry of requests for proposals to develop certain sites – but would this mean surrendering to the whims of high-end developers and pandering to the life-style of the moneyed class?

The Bayan Mutiara site - Photo by Anil

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Requests for proposals have been issued for the following:

  • 62-acre reclaimed site (with another 35 acres in the future) in Bayan Mutiara, comprising prestigious offices, specialist medical facilities (private hospitals?), commercial blocks, residential enclaves, retail and public spaces. This was supposed to be Gerakan’s mini-Putrajaya site in the days when it was dreaming and had illusions of grandeur. Is medical tourism really a priority for the people? Who benefits? Don’t we have enough private hospitals? What about decent low-income housing here? We always claim there is not enough land for affordable housing. What about this space? What about a large public park and more green spaces?
  • the controversial Penang International Convention Centre – a lot has been said about this already.
  • restoration and refurbishment of Fort Cornwallis – why can’t this be handled by a state authority? In the UK, the Tower of London is managed by Historic Royal Palaces, which is a ‘charity’ or non-profit NGO, governed by a chairman and a board of trustees (non-executive and unpaid) chosen for their skills and expertise.  The chief executive of HRP (who heads a board of directors) reports to the board of trustees on the performance of the monuments and sites and ultimately to the legislative assembly to account for the public assets they are entrusted with. HRP receives no funding from the government. Instead, it relies on the support of visitors, members, donors, volunteers and sponsors. Can’t a similar model, suitably adapted, work in Penang for our own historical sites such as Fort Cornwallis and Crag Hotel?
  • restoration and refurbishment of Crag Hotel – Will this provide a beachhead on Penang Hill for developers to come in with more high-end development at the eco-sensitive hill-top? Would ordinary public be able to tour the Hotel when it is open? Or would this be turned into another exclusive venue for the rich?
  • nature trail and canopy walk on Penang Hill – Do we need an RFP for this? Wouldn’t this be best handled and managed by nature enthusiasts working with state agencies?
  • Komtar revitalisation – anything to mitigate this BN sore thumb in George Town, providedexisting public spaces and greenery are not sacrificed to add to the congestion.
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Ong Eu Soon
9 Aug 2014 1.41pm

And the winner is Ewein Berhad

3 Jul 2014 12.44pm

Years after….
2014, Penang Hill Nature Trail n Canopy Walk tak ada.
The Crag Hotel lagi teruk, the high end Aman Group’s boutique hotel still nowhere. But nobody in CAT government is responsibile for all these.

2 Nov 2010 8.09pm

Hai ya, got money we worry, no money also worry…

I often said to my friend, six feet under is the most peaceful place, no one will kacau you…

2 Nov 2010 5.27pm

If one has nice sea view, the dangers faced are tsumami, beach erosion and eat away the land or sediment deposition just like melaka becomes a sampan port. Or the recent caution about meteor impact into the ocean and those living beside the sea will be first to be affect. Those trying to live on hill slopes are affected by landslide natural or man made. A (sewage) pipe or leaking water from water board can trigger a collapse. So as a rich miner in Under under says, no money, one worries. One has a lot of money also worries as… Read more »

2 Nov 2010 5.09pm

Now you know why “DAP = UMNO” !

2 Nov 2010 5.08pm

Anil, Nothing is stopping the “groups” you are suggesting to put put in their Prosposals.
RFP is the most professional way to invite interested parties to provided their views and ideas.
Just because it is a RFP, does not mean it has to be a commercial or purely business venture.
As long as the RFP that is viable, and not a liability, then one has a case to argue.

2 Nov 2010 2.45pm

Any land/property with a nice sea view, strategic location, prime land (according to developers’ view), exclusive enclave, etc, etc are not earmarked for the not so rich populace who are not profitable property customers (according to the developers’ advice). These not so rich forgettable of modern societies and money-worshipping-materialistic-cult idolism are rendered to the backwaters or hinterland or mainland of low value far from the sights of upturned nose of bourgeois class pretentions. Where is the separation of class society from the ‘tak gaya’ more apparent than in living abodes of Penang in upperclass Tanjung Bungah, Gurney Drive and Jalan… Read more »

semuanya OK kot
semuanya OK kot
2 Nov 2010 2.17pm

It seems that in another 100 years, every bit of the country will be covered with concrete and tar.

Build = Develop = Progress ?

3 Nov 2010 11.25am

We can’t conduct scientific experiments under a tree right? I think you should focus on population control.

Kamal B
Kamal B
2 Nov 2010 2.10pm


Why do you make noise when RFP is a standard practice since the BN days?

We are not living in a socialist society.
Are you suggesting that the land be left for the unlicensed traders to do their business?

Everyone needs to compete to earn a living.
If you do not have the money, work extra harder and do not waste money unnecessarily. If you cannot make it today, ensure your next generation receive good education to compete in the future. We are not living in a welfare state.