MRT: Bukit Bintang Central Station


Controversy has erupted over 20 lots in KL’s main shopping district, Bukit Bintang, to be acquired for the Klang Valley Mass Rapid Transit (MRT). Are transport planners hoping to reap a windfall from property development while entrenching a consumerist culture?

According to the videoclip, something else – “an exciting future development” – will be sprouting near the Jalan Bukit Bintang-Jalan Sultan Ismail intersection. And it also looks as if there’s going to be an extensive pedestrian tunnel system underground with kiosks and stores connecting various points in the area.

Is this how they are going to fund the RM50bn MRT project? (Don’t ask me how they arrive at that stupendous total in the first place.)

Prasarana says the lots will be acquired to make way for tunnelling works and an underground station. Several lots along Jalan Bukit Bintang, Jalan Imbi, Jalan Jati, Jalan Inai, Jalan Kamuning, Jalan Kampung and Jalan Utara reportedly would be acquired under the Land Acquisition Act 1960.

There is something else to consider. Blog reader Orang Kechil comments:

… we should all consider … the social and cultural heritage of Bukit Bintang – these cultural and social networks have taken at least a hundred years to evolve – there are real traders there who not only have social ties that form the very cement that makes Malaysia a very unique place. Now all these attributes are going to be replaced by stainless steel and glass cladding where we will probably have the same run of the mill antiseptic Italian restaraunts and bistros that is really a form of McDonalization that we can very well do without – so we can well expect the new demographics of Bukit Bintang to offer us nothing more than what is typically on offer in most cities around the world – and this again should lead many to question, if all we can offer is a saccharine social and cultural product – how might this add value to the whole idea of selling Malaysia as a unique cultural hub.

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17 Sep 2011 3.48pm

future plane is pepole benifit

7 Sep 2011 11.11am

I think we need to look at the BIG picture here – the MRT is just another poorly planned BN project that’s (may) funnel the rakyat’s money to fat-cat BN cronies. Why else do you think the Finance Ministry is so heavily involved in deciding which companies get the lucrative contracts? If the LRT had been originally planned properly, it would have allowed for future expansion to cater for a growing population & city – we wouldn’t need the MRT. But like everything the BN govt does, since crony interests are the first thing they consider when deciding on a… Read more »

5 Sep 2011 4.46pm

BN builds MRT so that Umno gains from the property acquisition and redevelopment?

3 Sep 2011 3.59pm

Prasarana is an acronym for ‘Pasti rasa & merana’.
How appropriate given its dubious nature of operation.

3 Sep 2011 3.56pm

This is a no brainer.. If you are doing a 50 billion ringgit project and the government has no money….you need to figure out how to (rake in the money)… And the best way you do that today is not by buying MAS or Air Asia shares but by grabbing property….high value property and using that as collateral to get your 50 billion…and with 50 billion, you get to do the MRT for 10 billion and pocket the rest with the guarantor (that’s you and me..aka The Government…later to be known as IMF incorporated) to pay for it later …if… Read more »

Orang Kechil
Orang Kechil
2 Sep 2011 2.16pm

I think most people are missing the point here – the MRT KL project is certainly a good solution to solve many of the transportation woes of urbanites in the Klang Valley. What is the issue is not who is awarded the contract – the main bone of contention as many experts have gleaned from whatever little that has been forwarded to the Rakyat is simply this: (1) Why do some of the MRT stations affect so many small time shop holders – bear in mind, these folk have worked hard to be small property owners. And since the Land… Read more »