Vi­sion­ary plan to trans­form state

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Daulat Tuanku -

Pri­vate-sec­tor driven and touted to be the first of its kind in the coun­try, the multi-bil­lion ring­git Malaysian Vi­sion Val­ley project is set to cat­a­pult Ne­gri Sem­bi­lan into one of Malaysia’s ma­jor in­vest­ment des­ti­na­tions and fastest grow­ing states.

To be de­vel­oped over a sprawl­ing 108,000ha area cov­er­ing the Serem­ban-Ni­lai-Port Dick­son growth tri­an­gle, the MVV, which is big­ger in size than Pe­nang and one-and-a-half times that of Sin­ga­pore, has been metic­u­lously planned over sev­eral years and is poised to be­come one of the coun­try’s new growth cen­tre.

Men­tri Be­sar Datuk Seri Mo­hamad Hasan, who has been in­volved in the de­sign of the MVV when it was first on the plan­ning board some­time in 2007, said the project was set to change the land­scape of the state in ev­ery as­pect.

“I am very ex­cited about the 30-year MVV de­vel­op­ment as it will trans­form Ne­gri Sem­bi­lan into one of the coun­try’s ma­jor economies.

“The MVV will ri­val Kuala Lumpur and be­come a more at­trac­tive place to live and work in,” he said, adding that the MVV would be of­fi­cially launched by Prime Min­is­ter Datuk Seri Na­jib Tun Razak in the first quar­ter of this year.

Mo­hamad ex­plained that the idea for the MVV had evolved from a pro­posal to con­struct the coun­try’s first low-cost car­rier ter­mi­nal in Labu.

“Be­fore the LCCT was built in Sepang, we had pro­posed to the Gov­ern­ment to build the ter­mi­nal on land be­long­ing to con­glom­er­ate Sime Darby Bhd in Labu, which was in the MVV area.

“How­ever, that did not hap­pen due to a com­bi­na­tion of fac­tors,” he said, adding that he then went back to the draw­ing board with sev­eral par­ties to fine-tune the plan.

Mo­hamad, who spent many suc­cess­ful years in the bank­ing, au­to­mo­bile, ho­tel and re­tail busi­nesses both here and abroad, then re­alised that de­spite be­ing a small state, Ne­gri Sem­bi­lan has large swathes of land and ex­cel­lent in­fra­struc­ture. It there­fore has the po­ten­tial to be the next fastest growth cen­tre be­cause the Klang Val­ley is in­creas­ingly con­gested.

“We then started work­ing on an­other plan and pro­posed it to the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment, which gave us the go-ahead,” he said, adding that the in­te­grated eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment would have an es­ti­mated gross de­vel­op­ment value of RM640­bil.

Af­ter many meet­ings, the Prime Min­is­ter en­dorsed the MVV and even pledged that the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment would al­lo­cate RM5­bil un­der the 11th Malaysia Plan for in­fra­struc­ture projects within the val­ley.

Mo­hamad has ev­ery rea­son to be ex­cited for the MVV, which will be di­vided into five clus­ters.

The state’s only high-speed rail (HSR) stop will be lo­cated here, as will new in­dus­trial and busi­ness; re­search and ed­u­ca­tional; and sports and re­cre­ational ar­eas.

With­out re­veal­ing too much, Mo­hamad said the Serem­ban clus­ter would be turned into the cen­tral busi­ness dis­trict. The Ran­tauJimah area had been ear­marked for new res­i­den­tial ar­eas, where more af­ford­able homes would be built, while the Ni­lai-En­stek- Sen­dayan tri­an­gle would be an ed­u­ca­tion-cum-sports clus­ter.

“Un­der the first phase, there will be a 2,500ha area where we will house hi-tech and re­search-based in­dus­tries,” he said.

The MVV will also be a mag­net for high-tech multi­na­tional com­pa­nies plan­ning to set up their op­er­a­tions as well as re­search and de­vel­op­ment and cam­pus fa­cil­i­ties in the same place.

It will also house pri­vate uni­ver­si­ties and re­search labs as more peo­ple move into the area.

Mo­hamad said it would make good eco­nomic sense for in­dus­tries to move to the MVV.

It will also be a bet­ter al­ter­na­tive for those who work in the city but pre­fer to live in the sub­urbs.

“When I was work­ing in London, many of my col­leagues used to travel to work from places like Brighton and Bed­ford, lo­cated some 75km away.

“With prop­er­ties be­com­ing in­creas­ingly scarce and ex­pen­sive in the city, peo­ple would rather chose to live at the pe­riph­eries where they have an op­tion to buy landed dwellings at cheaper prices,” he said.

Plans are al­ready un­der­way to cope with the ex­pected pop­u­la­tion growth.

Among the projects planned within the MVV un­der the 11th Malaysia Plan are the con­struc­tion of the Serem­ban-KLIA-PD high­way, up­grad­ing of fed­eral roads in LabuNi­lai-Ban­dar En­stek, and an al­ter­na­tive road from the Serem­ban new toll plaza to the Serem­ban Mid­dle Ring Road.

“The MVV will be a mas­sive de­vel­op­ment project that will have its own com­muter and tram ser­vices to cater to the in­crease in pop­u­la­tion.

“We need to have a bet­ter pub­lic trans­port sys­tem for bet­ter con­nec­tiv­ity so that peo­ple can hop on to the HSR,” he said.

The HSR ser­vice, which will cut trav­el­ling time be­tween Kuala Lumpur and Sin­ga­pore to 90 min­utes, will also bring in more busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties to the state and en­hance in­vest­ment, trade and tourism.

He said an in­te­grated pub­lic trans­porta­tion sys­tem was vi­tal as the pop­u­la­tion in the MVV was ex­pected to in­crease from 700,000 to 3 mil­lion in the next 30 years.

Mo­hamad said his ad­min­is­tra­tion also wanted the Ex­press Rail Link (ERL) ser­vice be­tween KL Sen­tral and the KLIA ex­tended to the soon-to-be-built HSR ter­mi­nal in Labu.

The fed­eral au­thor­i­ties should also con­sider ex­tend­ing the Mass Rapid Tran­sit (MRT) line from Ka­jang to Labu.

“If the ERL and MRT lines are ex­tended to the HSR sta­tion near here, it will be eas­ier for peo­ple to get to many places, in­clud­ing KLIA and KLIA2 and vice versa.

“We hope these re­quests will be con­sid­ered as we plan to­wards im­prov­ing the pub­lic trans­porta­tion net­work,” he said.

He said if this was done, the HSR ter­mi­nal would be turned into an in­te­grated trans­porta­tion hub, al­low­ing more peo­ple to use pub­lic trans­port.

“On our part, we will ar­range for shut­tle and taxi ser­vices at the HSR to link the ter­mi­nal with nearby ar­eas,” he said.

Mo­hamad said plans to re­ha­bil­i­tate the 39km Serem­ban-Port Dick­son high­way un­der a pub­lic-pri­vate part­ner­ship ini­tia­tive would be a cat­a­lyst to de­vel­op­ment in the MVV.

“We are so happy that the rail line will be re­ha­bil­i­tated be­cause it will sup­port the move­ment of peo­ple and goods to and from Port Dick­son.

“The line will also fur­ther boost trade and tourism, which trans­lates into more rev­enue for the state,” he said.

The fed­eral au­thor­i­ties have agreed to re­build the rail route, which had been closed since 2008 fol­low­ing the de­rail­ment of a freight train trans­port­ing diesel from a re­fin­ery in Port Dick­son to Ipoh.

Mo­hamad said more peo­ple would also move to the MVV once the Ko­muter train fre­quency within Greater Kuala Lumpur and Serem­ban was re­duced in three years to 7.5 min­utes from the present 15 min­utes.

Mo­hamad said the state gov­ern- ment was also propos­ing the con­struc­tion of a ded­i­cated rail line to carry goods from Ni­lai to Port Klang.

The line, he said, would pass through the KLIA.

“Since Ni­lai is go­ing to be one of the big­gest in­dus­trial ar­eas planned un­der the Malaysian Vi­sion Val­ley project, it will only make sense if the goods from here are trans­ported by rail.

“It will be both cheaper and safer if the cargo is taken there by rail,” he said

To lend cre­dence to the fact that the MVV is a truly well-drafted plan, the val­ley will also house a 400ha Cen­tral Park to be lo­cated a short dis­tance away from Serem­ban.

“Our Cen­tral Park will be sim­i­lar to the fa­mous pub­lic re­cre­ational parks of London, New York and Paris.

“We are not only fo­cus­ing on phys­i­cal de­vel­op­ment. There will also be a spe­cial place where the peo­ple can re­lax and ex­er­cise,” he said.

Mo­hamad said af­ford­able hous­ing and 1Malaysia Peo­ple’s Hous­ing projects would be in­cor­po­rated into the MVV.

“With more peo­ple mov­ing into the area, we had to make pro­vi­sions to build more houses, in­clud­ing af­ford­able ones.

“We have al­ready planned ahead where the res­i­den­tial ar­eas will be lo­cated and that these are eas­ily ac­ces­si­ble,” he said.

Other projects that have been ear­marked for ini­tial launch in the MVV plan in­clude the con­struc­tion of Serem­ban Cen­tral, Serem­ban Re­sort City, the next phase of the Port Dick­son Water­front and the Port Dick­son Splash Park.

Mo­hamad (right) look­ing at the state’s 30-year draft struc­ture plan, which was metic­u­lously pre­pared to en­sure bal­anced de­vel­op­ment in all dis­tricts in the state.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malaysia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.