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Architects run into problems with one-stop centres
06/07/07 NST

KUALA LUMPUR: One-stop centres (OSCs) at local authorities handling applications for development projects have run into teething problems.

Architects are complaining that some OSCs are not accepting their development plans.

There have also been reports of local councils rejecting plans that were submitted in parts.

Malaysian Institute of Architects (PAM) past president Tan Pei Ing said some OSCs were insisting that town planners sign off on applications. "Architects have always been able to sign off on planning approvals.

"But since the OSC came about, some are insisting that town planners are the right people to submit applications."

Tan said the guidelines stated that planning approvals, land alienation, and subdivision and building plans could be submitted at one go for faster approval.

"But there are times when it is impossible to submit these plans simultaneously when large-scale projects are involved.

"As such, planners or architects would submit these in stages but the local council will not accept these plans in parts."

She said the new policy was meant to be flexible in principle but was not so in practice.

During a meeting between PAM and the ministry on Tuesday, Tan said officials were "very receptive" to issues raised and promised that difficulties would be ironed out.

Meanwhile, Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting said teething problems were only to be expected as the OSC was a new system.

"What we are saying (to local authorities) is donít sit on it and make people wait," said Ong.

He was speaking after launching PAMís Archidex07 at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre yesterday.

"If the application is rejected, inform the submitting party immediately. It is for the good of the country as saving time will boost competitiveness."

The OSC concept was announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi in April.

It calls for the setting up of an OSC at every local authority to quicken approval of development projects. This is part of government efforts to boost the property sectorís delivery system.

 

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