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Selangor focuses on rehabilitating abandoned projects
19/10/2009 By Lam Jian Wyn

PETALING JAYA: The Selangor state government is trying to revive as many abandoned housing projects as possible in the state. As of June 2009, the state government has identified and allotted 18 projects (involving 15,128 units of homes) to be undertaken by new developers and financiers willing to revive them, said state executive councillor Iskandar A Samad.

Some projects are currently ongoing while others have already been completed, said the exco in charge of Housing, Building, Structure and Administration of Squatters.

“Numerous meetings are being held on a weekly basis among the many parties involved, including purchasers, new developers, bankers, liquidators, lawyers and potential project consultants,” he said during his luncheon address at the National Property and Housing Summit 2009 organised by the Asian Strategy & Leadership Institute on Oct 19.

When the current state government took over in 2008, there were 144 abandoned projects comprising 48,360 residential units with a total gross development value of between RM7 billion to RM9 billion, he said.

Nonetheless, not all projects can be revived due to the huge financial deficit accrued by the previous developers, he added.

Besides reviving abandoned projects, Iskandar said the state is also looking at rehabilitating riverbank areas along the Klang River with projects akin to Clarke Quay in Singapore. This will create real estate investment opportunities as well as social benefits, he said.

“Around the world, the value of riverfront properties are usually multiple the value of properties located elsewhere,” he said.

The state government, he added is encouraging the private sector to reduce river pollution, clean up the river and to develop property by the riverbank.

“The private sector has already been requested to submit proposals to the Selangor Economic Stimulus Package secretariat, and in fact the deadline is today (Oct 19),” he said. The state is conducting land and ownership surveys, holding meetings among stakeholders, and appointing consultants.

“We expect to see work starting in early 2010,” he added.

As for urban renewal, Iskandar said it will be divided into three main areas: redevelopment, regeneration and rehabilitation.

Redevelopment will entail building new buildings in place of old unusable ones, while regeneration will involve optimising the value and capacity of a building and rehabilitation will adapt the usage of old buildings through renovations.

“When the state embarks on these projects, the priority ultimately is to benefit the community,” he said, adding that the specific areas for urban renewal have not been identified.


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