FOCUS ON SS2
HAVING spent five years looking for a house to purchase, Naenti Kaur finally settled for a double-storey link house in SS2/18, Petaling Jaya.
The prospect of residing in SS2 was not the most feasible for her at the beginning, but the past few months have proved to be good.
“It's not very high-class, not like Bangsar, which is good because there won't be as many theft cases,” she said, adding, “The neighbourhood is not bad.”
One of the largest and most heavily populated areas in Petaling Jaya, SS2 was developed in the early 1970s with its first settlers comprising civil servants and lecturers.
“SS2 was developed by Sea Housing and has more than 2,000 housing units,” said Damansara Utama assemblyman Datuk Lim Choon Kin.
The most common observation about SS2 is its distinctly Chinese feel, although this was not the case at the beginning, according to Naenti.
“I believe the first few residents were a mix of Malay, Chinese and Indian civil servants – I usually see them taking their evening walks around the park near my house.
“But, I think over the years, the area started to draw in a more Chinese crowd, probably because of the eateries,” she mused.
According to SS2 South RA president Lim Theng Kau, SS2 was formerly a rubber estate, and development of the area began in the southern portion of the area, with expansion moving westward.
Theng Kau watched the rubber plantations give way to development in his own backyard, with the opening of the Lebuhraya Puchong Damansara (LDP) alongside simultaneous expansions of neighbouring suburbs like Damansara Utama and Damansara Jaya.
Generally consisting of middle-class folk, SS2 is a self-sufficient neighbourhood and is perhaps the only suburb in PJ with an almost balanced residential-commercial ratio.
“I find this area to be conducive for both business and residence since I started my business in 1974,” said the owner of a thriving nasi kandar outlet.
Complemented by the smaller Cheow Yang commercial area, SS2’ss main commercial square is the indisputable heartbeat of the neighbourhood – a hodgepodge of banks, pubs, grocery retailers, a wet market, stationery stores, colleges and food outlets.
“SS2 is a very convenient neighbourhood. We have good transportation facilities, and the amenities are all within reach,” said Theng Kau, one of SS2’s first few residents when he moved in 1974.
Business is always bustling in the commercial centre, with hordes of outsiders heading to SS2 for their shopping, marketing or food.
Undeniably, it is the restaurants that attract the outsiders – a boon for those in the business, and a bane for residents.
“These people double- and triple-park near the road shoulders and corners. It’s dangerous,” Theng Kau complained.
“You face the same problems whether it is 9am or 10pm. SS2 is very congested,” echoed Naenti, who also voiced her frustration on the amount of crows in the area and the Petaling Jaya Municipal Council’s (MPPJ) cavalier take on the matter.
Parking and congestion aside, residents are increasingly weary of the rise in crime rates, especially snatch theft.
“Street lamps should be installed not just on the main streets, but also at the side and back lanes,” said a restaurant owner in Cheow Yang.
Nonetheless, residents take some consolation in the cooperation between the police force, local council and residents associations and Rukun Tetangga (of which SS2 has four – SS2 North RA, SS2 South RA, SS2A RT and SS2B RT).
“We have held many dialogue sessions, and enjoy a good relationship with the council and the police who have been patrolling the area and prompt in their service.
“This is a result of mutual understanding and give-and-take among all parties,” said Theng Kau.
The affairs of the neighbourhood are also overlooked by SS2 Cares, an action committee spearheaded by Datuk Lim Choon Kin and comprising 17 organisations including the RTs and RAs, NGOs, and business and education communities.
“Under SS2 Cares, we look out for the interests of all parties, besides bringing the community closer together through organising various events,” said Choon Kim.
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