IF you have recently been to Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman in Kuala Lumpur, you would have noticed the multicoloured security bollards installed in the area by Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL).
The city’s new art project serves a dual purpose.
Apart from being an Instagram sensation, the structures also prevent motorcyclists and mobile traders from invading the pedestrian walkways.
“We put them there to replace the traditional bollards, with the aim of stopping motorcyclists and traders from setting up stalls in public open spaces that will endanger pedestrians and cyclists, ” said DBKL’s Project Implementation and Building Maintenance Department director Norzaini Noordin.
“They are functional yet decorative. We did not expect them to become popular with Instagrammers.” She said most of the bollards were placed around the Sogo department store area to prevent motorcyclists from encroaching on the walkways.
Norzaini said the bollards, which were made of concrete, were the brainchild of Kuala Lumpur mayor Datuk Seri Mahadi Che Ngah. “The mayor wanted to ensure public safety while maintaining aesthetics.
“The bollards at Sogo is a pilot project to test them out, ” she said.
“People go there (Sogo) to shop, and at times, families with children wait outside while a parent goes in to do some quick shopping.
“So those waiting outside are safe from vehicular traffic invading the sidewalks and endangering people, ” she added.
So far, the bollards can also be seen at Kampung Baru.
DBKL plans to instal more of them in the city, targeting areas like the River of Life, whereby the painted bollards will reflect the water theme.
“The artwork on the bollards at the Sogo area reflect the cityscape. It is a collaboration with young artists, ” said Norzaini.
Based on the many people spotted taking photos of them, the bollards have definitely gained the attention of KL-ites.
“When I first saw them, I was confused because they looked weird at first, ” said Mariani Yahya.
“But then I realised they were placed at the entrance of the walkways to prevent motorcyclists from riding on the walkways.
“I thought, what a good idea, ” added Mariani, a secretary who works in the area.
“I think they should put more of these ‘balls’ in the Jalan Masjid India area, ” said Osman Li, an accountant who works nearby.
“The walkways there are constantly being ‘invaded’ by motorcyclists, especially food delivery riders.
“It is a nuisance, ” Osman said, adding that walkways were meant only for pedestrians.
“They are pretty and they bring colour to the area, ” said art student Sarah Lim.
“It is a good idea and very creative, ” another student, Anuja Ram who was shopping nearby, agreed.