Surprised over approval for tower

The approximately 5,000sq m plot of land between Villa Scott Condominium and Scott Sentral service apartment, in which developers intend to erect a 32-storey building. — SHAARI CHE MAT/The Star

AFTER numerous objections to a proposed 32-storey commercial development in Jalan Scott, Brickfields, a year ago, nearby residents were blindsided by signage indicating the project’s approval.

Scott Sentral serviced apartment and Villa Scott Condominium residents noticed the signboard for the planned 32-storey development with a 10-storey mechanical carpark on Oct 26.

Villa Scott resident A.S. Ratnam said the size of the lot, located between Scott Sentral and Villa Scott, was only 5,000 sq ft (464.5 sq m) and not enough to accommodate a project of that scale.

“The building will require extensive piling, especially taking into account the weight of the mechanical instruments,” she said, adding that the piling could cause cracks in existing buildings nearby.

She added that several residents attended a hearing on July 13, 2015, and had also sent written complaints to Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) last year, citing safety concerns as one of the main objections to the project.

“Not many residents attended the first hearing last year to raise objections as we were not notified of the development proposal.

“We stumbled upon an advertisement in the newspaper instead, and since the hearing, we have been following up with City Hall every month but have received no response.

“In the event of a fire, fire trucks will not be able to access the rear and sides of the commercial building.

“Traffic management in the area is already difficult because there are not enough parking spaces or roads to accommodate those going to the nearby temple,” said Ratnam.

The lack of privacy was another problem residents faced with the proposed development, as the tall building would overlook nearby buildings, said Villa Scott resident P. Selvadurai, 56.

“I heard that the development order was issued in April and the developers have already started the soft sale of units.

“But the setback between the two condominiums and the entrance and exit of the lot is too narrow,” he said.

Other residents raised the issue of poor ventilation, which they said was a health hazard.

On Nov 4, 24 residents from Scott Sentral and Villa Scott attended a dialogue with Bukit Bintang MP Fong Kui Lun to air their grouses.

Fong brought the issue to Kuala Lumpur mayor Datuk Seri Amin Nordin Abdul Aziz on the same day and the mayor said he would ask the Planning Department to look into it immediately.

“I will send a follow-up letter on Nov 7 and do my best to arrange a meeting between residents and the mayor as soon as possible.

“On Sept 4, 2015, I submitted the residents’ complaints to DBKL’s Planning Department but did not get any reply.

“Hopefully, DBKL will put a stop to the project unless the developers fulfil all the issues ranging from fire hazards to traffic,” he said.

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