‘Careful thought goes into project deliberations’


A group of Petaling Jaya residents standing along Jalan Harapan objecting to the proposed PJD Link, saying that it is actually the previously rejected Kidex highway project under a different name. -- Filepic

SELANGOR government has given its assurance that it will give the go-ahead to proposed development projects that will bring progress and improve people’s quality of life.

“We will not deliberately reject projects without a reason,” said Selangor infrastructure and public amenities, agriculture modernisation and agro-based industry committee chairman Izham Hashim in answer to a question regarding the Petaling Jaya Dispersal Link (PJD Link) project.

At the same time, he said, project concessionaires must ensure necessary due diligence was exercised.

The state, he added, had experienced first-hand many troubling issues from development projects in the past and so, it had to be careful in giving approval.

Unresolved land issues, flash floods because of incomplete drainage works and damage to public roads or residential properties were some of the issues the state government was left to deal with after some construction companies folded, said Izham.

He was replying to Rajiv Rishyakaran (PH-Bukit Gasing), who asked about the current status of the PJD Link project and whether the proposed four-lane expressway would suffer the same fate as the axed Kinrara-Damansara Expressway (Kidex) project.

Izham said that according to the Malaysian Highway Authority (LLM), the project was still in negotiation at the Federal Government level.

He said that in principle, the Cabinet agreed to the project in 2017.

Back then, it was stipulated that negotiations with a highway concessionaire could only begin after receiving policy approval from Selangor government.

The RM2.689bil project that will link Damansara to Bandar Kinrara, with an estimated land acquisition cost of RM735mil, was to be based on the build-operate-transfer method, subject to further negotiations on technical and financial matters.

Izham said the project presentation by LLM was noted at a state executive council (MMKN) meeting, which also agreed to it in principle on Sept 30 last year but with conditions.

Among the conditions set by MMKN was that the land acquisition process along the alignment must be completed before the start of construction.

“Secondly, the concessionaire must take responsibility for river maintenance as 2.5km of its alignment is above a river reserve that will see maximum construction right up to the reserve boundary,” he disclosed.

Izham said LLM was also required to hold further discussions with Petaling Jaya City Council to coordinate matters on development and local plan amendments pertaining to the river reserve area.

“The concessionaire must carry out environmental and social impact assessments arising from the implementation of this project.

“It will have to hold public engagement sessions with local residents affected by the proposed alignment.

“All these conditions are put in place to avoid issues such as unfinished land matters as well as protests by local residents,” he said.

He added that the company must also obtain approval from the Cabinet to sign the concession agreement before construction could begin.

The agencies involved in the negotiation process for the PJD Link project are the Public-Private Partnership Unit under the Prime Minister’s Department, Works Ministry, Attorney-General’s Chambers, Finance Ministry and LLM.

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