GEORGE TOWN, Sept 10 – The RM46 billion Penang Transport Master Plan (PTMP) and the Pan Island Link 1 (PIL 1) highway project will change the landscape of Penang heritage city, according to Penang Forum committee member Lim Gaik Siang.
She said it was out of a sense of responsibility and concern for environmental sustainability and the safety of the local community that Penang Forum, a non-governmental organisation, is once again urging the state government to review both mega projects which she said would not be successful, but would put both the environment and people at risk.
“Both projects will surely change the landscape of the heritage city and erase the historical legacy that has been conserved for so long,” Lim told reporters in a press conference here today.
“The PIL 1 will cut across hills, lakes, residential and commercial areas in Penang, affecting the Youth Park, the Hindu temple, the Kek Lok Si temple and several other areas, what happens then? It will surely cause sinkholes, flash floods and worse still, landslides,” she said.
“According to the Environmental Impact Assessment report, there will be an effect on areas like Kampung Baru, Sungai Ara, Masjid Al-Huda, Kampung Tersusun, Kampung Manggis, Bayan Baru which will suffer traffic congestion, geological impacts like poor water quality caused by river alignment activities (527m in Kampung Tersusun and Kampung Baru), noise pollution as well as social impacts on public safety.
Worse yet, she said, more than 50 homes in Kampung Tersusun near Sungai Ara will also be affected. Lim added that in the long-term, students in the Sungai Ara would also suffer air pollution which would affect their concentration. — Bernama