THE once dim and unkempt back alley connecting Jalan Magazine and Jalan Gurdwara is a hive of activity, with over 30 stalls selling handmade souvenirs and street food over weekends till Feb 11.
Known as Starry Starry Nite@Magazine Circus, the area is an ideal spot for visitors to capture the special moments with the LED lights nicely strung above.
The 135m-long backlane with a width of 870sq m area has been paved over with interlocking bricks and recycled timber designs.
It underwent a RM840,000 makeover, thanks to M-Summit Group who financed RM800,000 while World Class Global contributed the rest.
State Local Government Committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow said the move was part of George Town’s Business Improvement District Scheme, a collaboration and partnership model between business and property owners within the area.
“Visitors can come here to sample street food such as char koay teow, crispy chicken and satay from 5pm to 10.30pm.
“Parking wise, visitors can opt to park at the nearby buildings in the area, such as Penang Times Square, Gama Supermarket and Departmental Store, Komtar, Hotel Jen Penang and 1st Avenue Mall before coming over.
“The alley is now brightly lit in the evening and can be used as a cycling lane.
“We want to improve the negative perception of backlanes.
“It is an initiative in collaboration with the state government and Penang Island City Council,” he said during the first day of the Starry Starry Nite@ Magazine Circus event on Saturday.
Also present were M Summit Group managing director Datuk Albert Moh, MBPP secretary Yew Tung Seang, Komtar assemblyman Teh Lai Heng and Sungai Pinang assemblyman Lim Siew Khim.
Trader Chong Li Ai, 32, was spotted selling pau (dumpling) in various shapes and flavour such as mushroom, chocolate, green tea, barbecued pork (char siew) and red bean.
“My wife makes these pau and I help her to sell,” he said, adding that it was RM4 each.