HAWKERS and other stakeholders affected by the Jalan Alor upgrading are anxious about the status of the project.
They want more details from Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) about the size, location and number of stalls and whether all those trading there currently will be given licences.
DBKL had undertaken the plan to upgrade and beautify Jalan Alor in Bukit Bintang to turn it into a food paradise of international standards.
Jalan Alor Hawkers and Traders Association secretary Simon Ang, which represents more than 100 hawkers, traders, business owners and budget hotel operators, said they have been kept in the dark.
Phase one, which was completed two years ago, stretched from Dragon View Restaurant until Wong Ah Wah Chicken Wings.
Phase two, which started last year, is from Hotel Alor Boutique until Sawadee Thai Restaurant.
“Phase one involved mostly restaurant owners, while phase two involves mostly hawkers,” said Ang, adding that 85 licensed hawkers are affected.
“We have been trying to get more details of the project from DBKL since phase two started.
“In November 2018, the drawing done by the architect indicated that the project could only accommodate 63 stalls, which means 22 hawkers are unaccounted for.
“We were told there is a proposal for the walkway near Jalan Tong Shin and open-air parking space to be used to house the remaining 22 hawkers,” Ang said at a press conference in City Tower, Jalan Alor.
He added that during a site visit by DBKL executive director (Socio-economic Department) Datuk Ibrahim Yusoff and Bukit Bintang MP Fong Kui Lun on Feb 27, it was decided that the stall sizes would be 7ft x 4ft (2m x 1.2m) for food stalls and 4ft x 4ft (1.2m x 1.2m) for fruit and drink stalls.
“During a meeting on April 5, it was decided that the area near the parking space needed to be improved in line with the upgrading works.
“We were made to understand that DBKL has decided to cancel previously issued licences and issue fresh ones to hawkers based on their actual stall size at the existing site.
“During a subsequent meeting on April 17, we were told DBKL would allow hawkers to be housed along the walkway near Jalan Tong Shin, which means that all 85 licensed hawkers would get a trading space.”
Ang said there were mixed reactions from hawkers as some support having standardised stall sizes while others favour retaining the existing measurements.
Jalan Alor hawkers, he said, also want to know why DBKL issued licences to new traders last year although it was supposed to stop issuing temporary licences for roadside traders from Jan 1, 2016.
“We were surprised to learn that more than 10 hawkers who were part of a Kenduri 1Malaysia event last year were given
licences to trade at Jalan Alor,” said association vice-president Raymond Khue.
“This is unfair to those who have been trading for many years here and have been unsuccessful in obtaining licences despite going through the proper channels.”
Both denied allegations that the association was benefiting from the upgrading project.
The association is also seeking a meeting with DBKL’s Licensing Department to highlight its concerns.
When contacted, Fong advised the traders not to jump the gun and be patient.
“DBKL is still fine-tuning the drawings and I am also in talks with them regarding the project.
“Just bear with us a little and once everything is complete, we will update everyone,” he said.
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