THE Ampang Jaya Municipal Council (MPAJ) is checking on the status of a narrow strip of land in Taman Tun Abdul Razak, Ampang after it was once again closed off with metal fencing.
The land between two bungalows along Jalan 1 is the entrance to a popular hiking trail known as Bukit Kembara.
The trail leads hikers to an old disused reservoir surrounded by the Ampang forest reserve.
StarMetro reported in August that the access route to the trail was illegally closed off by a group of residents citing safety concerns. The fence was removed by MPAJ following complaints.
However, on Oct 11, it was discovered that the route was again fenced up, this time with a signboard stating that the land belonged to a private developer.
MPAJ press relations officer Norhayati Ahmad said they were in the midst of determining whether it is state land or private land.
“MPAJ did not order the closure and we are communicating with the parties involved,” she said.
A recent check showed that the fence had been removed and disposed of at an abandoned house next to the entrance.
Norhayati confirmed that the council had not removed the fence.
Regular hiker and Bukit Indah resident Natasha Fernz, 40, said there was no reason to fence up the access route.
“If this is done for safety reasons, then the whole area would have to be fenced up. There are also many routes to go up the hill.
“This is a popular trail because it is not too strenuous a hike and a scenic route.
“A lot of retirees tend to hike it daily and the route is also maintained by them,” she said.
Senior hiker Sunny Low, 63, said the hikers hoped that the status of the access route would be sorted out soon.
“A group of senior hikers maintain the trail, even go so far as to put up safety ropes and clearing any debris,” he said, adding that he had been hiking there regularly for the past nine years.
Low said several hikers would be sending a formal letter to MPAJ and the Selangor Forestry Department about the issue.