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The Malay Mail

TUESDAY, JANUARY 29, 2013 – 11:40
Location:
PETALING JAYA

 

Bukit Gasing landslip

 

MUDDY: Silt from the hillslope flows onto Jalan 5/60, near Frasers Towers in Bukit Gasing, after more rain yesterday. Four landslips had been reported in the area last week

 

THE slopes of Bukit Gasing need to be assessed using a methodical approach, according to geotechnical engineer Gue See-Sew.

Gue, who is also the chairman of the Expert Standing Committee on Slope Safety established by the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) recently, said they were looking into institutionalising solutions for landslides in Malaysia.

“We have to explore the design, construction and supervision as well as maintenance of slopes,” he said. “We must focus on these issues and find solutions to mitigate them with a systematic way of tackling them.”

Gue said although the new guidelines for slopes were sufficient, hazard and risk analysis needed to be carried out on old slopes.

“If it is a high risk area, local authorities have to issue orders to investigate and strengthen the slopes there,” he said.

SlopeWatch programme director Eriko Motoyama said they had been receiving reports from Bukit Gasing residents regarding landslides for a year but they still needed to look at various aspects before getting involved.

SlopeWatch would then assist residents in ensuring their concerns were heard by the authorities.

Bukit Gasing, which falls within the custody of both Petaling Jaya Municipal Council and Kuala Lumpur City Hall, experienced a number of landslips on Friday and over the weekend.

Petaling Jaya councillor Derek Fernandez said this was the second occurrence of landslides there in the past month and cautioned that nature would not wait for tenders and processes.

Yesterday, The Malay Mail reported that Maxwell Towers residents’ association and joint action committee for Bukit Gasing member Gary Yeoh had also pointed out a collapsed wall in a nearby sewage treatment plant aside from the landslides previously reported.

The sewage treatment company said they would investigate the cause for the collapsed wall.

There are two other condominium towers on Bukit Gasing other than Maxwell Towers. They are Frasers Towers and Cameron Towers

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Nurul Izzah (center) and Hannah (2nd.from right) showing the extend of the damage caused to Bukit Gasing.

Nurul Izzah (center) and Hannah (2nd.from right) showing the extend of the damage caused to Bukit Gasing.

http://fz.com/content/have-emergency-response-team-mbpj-told

By Stephanie Sta Maria

KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 29): Property developer Gasing Meridian has shot down news reports that have linked its development work to recent landslides in Bukit Gasing.

Its managing director, Kenneth Tan, voiced his concern during a press conference today over the media’s apparent confusion as to the location of the landslides.
“I cannot speak for the other sites but there have been no landslides at Gasing Meridian,” he said. “I survey the area on a regular basis and let me officially say, there have been no landslides. Period.”
Gasing Meridian is the developer of the Sanctuary Ridge Kuala Lumpur project that will see 70 luxury bungalows being built in Bukit Gasing.
The developer recently won a five-year legal battle against Bukit Gasing residents who wanted the project stopped for fear of landslides and environmental damage.
Four landslides took place in Bukit Gasing over the past week. One occurred close to Maxwell Towers and news reports have linked it to Gasing Meridian’s development work.
Bukit Gasing Joint Action Committee member Gary Yeoh today showed the media what he said were photographs of the landslides including the one near Maxwell Towers.
After looking at the photos, however, Tan said that the area in question was not on Gasing Meridian’s site.
“We take our responsibility as a developer very seriously,” said Tan. “We’re developing the area step by step which is the right procedure.”
“When we expose the earth it looks like a landslide has occurred but it is actually man-made hill cutting.”
“We’ve also set up adequate buffer zones between our development site and residential areas including Gasing Indah and the Syabas pipeline and reservoir,” he added.
Tan said the Sanctuary Ridge project had undergone thorough investigations that spanned four years and subjected it to the scrutiny of 13 agencies, including the Department of Environment and the Department of Minerals and Geoscience.
A Maxwell Tower resident later took fz.com to his apartment on the 23rd floor, where we had a direct view of the alleged landslide area. The patch of exposed land was behind a green fence which Victor Oorjitham said was on Gasing Meridian’s development site.
Victor, 82, pointed out that the distance of the buffer zone between the green fence and Maxwell Tower’s wire fence was very narrow and that any further landslides would affect the apartment residents.
Yeoh meanwhile appealed to Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) to relook at all hill slope developments and keep the Bukit Gasing residents informed on monitoring procedures and reports.
The Sanctuary Ridge project area on top of Bukit Gasing, comes under the jurisdiction of DBKL.

The Sanctuary Ridge project area on top of Bukit Gasing, comes under the jurisdiction of DBKL.

Maxwell resident Victor Oorjitham,showing the picture of the 'landslide' are to Kenneth Tan

Maxwell resident Victor Oorjitham, showing the picture of the ‘landslide’ area to Kenneth Tan

By Stephanie Sta Maria

http://fz.com/content/developer-no-landslides-bukit-gasing-site

KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 29): Property developer Gasing Meridian has shot down news reports that have linked its development work to recent landslides in Bukit Gasing.

Its managing director, Kenneth Tan, voiced his concern during a press conference today over the media’s apparent confusion as to the location of the landslides.

“I cannot speak for the other sites but there have been no landslides at Gasing Meridian,” he said. “I survey the area on a regular basis and let me officially say, there have been no landslides. Period.”
Gasing Meridian is the developer of the Sanctuary Ridge Kuala Lumpur project that will see 70 luxury bungalows being built in Bukit Gasing.
The developer recently won a five-year legal battle against Bukit Gasing residents who wanted the project stopped for fear of landslides and environmental damage.
Four landslides took place in Bukit Gasing over the past week. One occurred close to Maxwell Towers and news reports have linked it to Gasing Meridian’s development work.
Bukit Gasing Joint Action Committee member Gary Yeoh today showed the media what he said were photographs of the landslides including the one near Maxwell Towers.
After looking at the photos, however, Tan said that the area in question was not on Gasing Meridian’s site.
“We take our responsibility as a developer very seriously,” said Tan. “We’re developing the area step by step which is the right procedure.”
“When we expose the earth it looks like a landslide has occurred but it is actually man-made hill cutting.”
“We’ve also set up adequate buffer zones between our development site and residential areas including Gasing Indah and the Syabas pipeline and reservoir,” he added.
Tan said the Sanctuary Ridge project had undergone thorough investigations that spanned four years and subjected it to the scrutiny of 13 agencies, including the Department of Environment and the Department of Minerals and Geoscience.
A Maxwell Tower resident later took fz.com to his apartment on the 23rd floor, where we had a direct view of the alleged landslide area. The patch of exposed land was behind a green fence which Victor Oorjitham said was on Gasing Meridian’s development site.
Victor, 82, pointed out that the distance of the buffer zone between the green fence and Maxwell Tower’s wire fence was very narrow and that any further landslides would affect the apartment residents.
Yeoh meanwhile appealed to Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) to relook at all hill slope developments and keep the Bukit Gasing residents informed on monitoring procedures and reports.
The alledge landslide just above the green fence which separates Gasing Meridian and Maxwell Towers.

The alleged landslide just above the green fence which separates Gasing Meridian and Maxwell Towers.

 

 

 

 

29 Jan 2013 – BUKIT GASING, KUALA LUMPUR
Saya bersama YB Hannah Yeoh dan saudari Kasthuri Patto sewaktu sidang media bersama penduduk Maxwell Towers di Bukit Gasing. Para penduduk risau akan kejadian tanah runtuh yang makin kerap berlaku akhir-akhir ini.

Posted on 29 January 2013 – 08:38pm
Last updated on 30 January 2013 – 12:31am

R. Nadeswaran

http://www.thesundaily.my/news/600982

Nades Amend laws with care

EVERY time it rains, colleagues in the office get phone calls from those staying around Bukit Gasing in Petaling Jaya. Most of us are familiar with the callers. It’s either erosion of parts of the hill or fear of landslides.

Speculation or otherwise, clearing hillslopes and building on them always invite public scrutiny and inevitably, bad news. Even the slightest trace of gravel on the road is enough to prompt calls but as a matter of fact, if you see bare slopes of the hill being washed down, what appears to be unfounded, becomes founded.

As this column is being written, there’s a visit to the area by the local MP and other party officials.

Despite sustained opposition from residents and environmentalists since 2005, the developer Gasing Meridian Sdn Bhd began earthworks on the Sanctuary Ridge Kuala Lumpur City project two years ago.

It had appointed consultant Ikram Engineering Services Sdn Bhd to monitor the construction of 69 bungalows on the 15ha land, which is supposed to put in place mitigation measures to ensure slope stability.

Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) admitted it could do nothing to stop the development in Bukit Gasing because doing so would require buying the land out of public funds.

Mayor Datuk Ahmad Phesal Talib was quoted as saying that DBKL had initially opposed the project, but now has no choice but to abide by a court order.

“(The developer) Gasing Meridian Sdn Bhd has already won the court case, how can we stop it?” he asked.

“Now we have to let Gasing Meridian to execute the project but with precautions. If we try to stop them we have to issue a notice of purchase.

“Who is buying? The public.”

Ahmad Phesal is echoing his predecessor, Tan Sri Ahmad Fuad Ismail who said: “The land belongs to the developer and DBKL would have to spend RM135 million if it were to acquire the land to gazette as a green lung.”

He said DBKL had already applied to gazette the neighbouring 52.6ha public land as a green lung in December 2010.

Ahmad Phesal is right and wrong. He’s right in the sense that the developer won a court case. Wrong in the sense that he does not want to admit that DBKL has become its own victim after amending the planning laws to suit its needs and to silence residents who wanted to express their views on safety.

DBKL moved the goalposts or changed the law after the then Supreme Court ruled against it in 1992 in the case of Datin Azizah Abdul Ghani v Dewan Bandaraya Kuala Lumpur & Others over its refusal to not allow her to take part in the planning decision making process.

The rules had provided that upon receipt of any application for planning permission, DBKL should inform the registered proprietors of the land adjoining the land to which the application relates, to enable them to exercise their right to object to the granting of planning permission.

Azizah, as an adjoining neighbour applied for an order of certiorari to quash the decision of the mayor on the grounds that she was never given an opportunity to object, since she never received the DBKL notice calling for objections.

In 1994, DBKL changed the law and the right to a public hearing was narrowed down to two limbs – if there is a change in land use and if there is an increase in residential density.

This, in short, DBKL used its unfettered powers to amend the laws and now finds itself in this predicament. If those living in Gasing Hill had been allowed to present their case vis-à-vis safety, the mayor and his team would have had some cause not to issue the development order.

Today, the DBKL has discovered that its hands and feet have been bound; their mouths and ears have been stuffed; and they have no authority to listen to the people.

They have belatedly discovered that they had used a sledgehammer to swat a fly and in the process destroyed the basic principle of the right to be heard.

Will DBKL reinstate its laws which will be consistent with the Town and Country Planning Act which governs the rest of the country? Will it learn from its mistakes? How can it happen when there are 3,000 development projects under its jurisdiction and that’s plenty of money floating around?

R. Nadeswaran has nothing against developers or development which does not threaten the safety of those living in the neighbourhood. Comments: citizen-nades@thesundaily.com

Mayor Ahmad Phesal Talib told a press conference today that DBKL had initially opposed the project, but now has no choice but to abide by a court order

Mayor Ahmad Phesal Talib told a press conference today that DBKL had initially opposed the project, but now has no choice but to abide by a court order

Koh Jun Lin | Jan 28, 2013

Despite a recent series of landslides, Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) could not stop the hillslope development in Bukit Gasing because doing so would require purchasing the land out of public funds.

Mayor Ahmad Phesal Talib told a press conference today that DBKL had initially opposed the project, but now has no choice but to abide by a court order.

“(The developer) Gasing Meridian Sdn Bhd has already won the court case, how can we stop it?

“Now we have to let Gasing Meridian to execute the project but with precautions. If we try to stop them we have to issue a notice of purchase. Who is buying? The public,” he said at a press conference today.

When it was pointed out that there had been a series of landslides in the area over the weekend, he said, “If there are landslides, we will take action together with the developers. It is no problem.”

Read more here: http://m.malaysiakini.com/news/220120

Fresh concerns over safety as earth and wall give way after downpour

MONDAY, JANUARY 28, 2013 – 11:47
Location:
PETALING JAYA
landslide at bukit gasing

SLIPPERY SLOPE: One of the many sections of Bukit Gasing along Jalan 5/60 where landslips occurred over the weekend — Pix: RAZAK GHAZALI

OVER the weekend, landslips have occurred on Bukit Gasing, on both sides of Petaling Jaya and Kuala Lumpur.

A section of a wall surrounding a nearby sewage treatment plant in Taman Gasing Indah also collapsed, possibly due to a silt slide which breached the hoarding alongside it.

A member of the Maxwell Towers residents association and joint action committee for Bukit Gasing, Gary Yeoh, said the landslips on the Kuala Lumpur side were clearly visible.

“A landslip can be seen from Maxwell Towers, about 10m from the border,” he said.

He said he was informed of the landslip by a neighbour after a downpour on Friday. “About 10m of the boundary wall of a sewage treatment plant outside the main gate (of the development) had also fallen,” he said.

Petaling Jaya councillor Derek Fernandez said Friday’s three landslips on the Petaling Jaya side near Fraser Towers were a serious matter as it was the second time that landslips had been reported within a month.

The previous incident had taken place last Christmas. “It is a clear indication the slope is not stable,” he said.

landslide at bukit gasing

COLLAPSED: A fallen boundary wall. Bukit Gasing residents fear that the next structure giving way could be their homes

“Further landslides could cause loss of life or property, especially for residents of Fraser Towers.”

He said he had highlighted the matter to the Petaling Jaya Municipal Council and the state government but it had been a month and no eff ective measures had been taken.

“I understand that the land is privately owned but as the government, we cannot wait for irresponsible landowners to do the needful,” he said.

landslide at bukit gasing

YEOH: Says landslip on Kuala Lumpur side visible from Maxwell Towers

“We have the power to enter their land and take the necessary action to stabilise the slope and improve the drainage without their consent and hold them liable for the cost and losses and threat to public safety.”

Fernandez also suggested that the state government forfeit the land of such irresponsible landowners.

He said he had warned Kuala Lumpur City Hall about the situation on their side and highlighted the matter in the Federal Court.

“So, if anyone dies (there), City Hall must take responsibility,” he said.

Attempts to contact the developer, sewage treatment plant operator, as well as City Hall were unsuccessful.

 

http://www.mmail.com.my/story/landslips-bukit-gasing-45399

 

DSC01416

Close-up:  a section of the slope has slipped due to erosion…..

DSC01417

Landslip at Maxwell Towers. Gasing Heights.    Photo Credit: GYeoh

For the last 3 days, we at Bukit Gasing area have had heavy downpours. Today, just after the afternoon’s downpour, a landslide occurred within meters from Maxwell Towers. There was also a landslide along Jalan 5/60 towards Fraser Towers. There have been numerous other landslides on Bukit Gasing recently that have been in the press. MBPJ had met with residents last year and we understand they are still investigating and determining the right course of action to protect lives and properties. With the landslides today, we are expecting urgent steps to be take to make the slopes safe on Bukit Gasing – PJ side.

DBKL has so far ignored evidence of landslides on Sanctuary Ridge development site. This blog had featured landslips on the steep slopes of earthworks done by the developer. Alas, we have seen little tangible evidence of DBKL being concerned at all these landslides.

The most recent disaster at Bukit Setiawangsa should have been a reminder to the Mayor of KL to be concerned about steep hill slope developments. Will DBKL wait for fatalities before they react to the many signs that development on steep hill slopes of Bukit Gasing is unsafe? Will the Mayor act to protect lives and properties or will he hide behind legalities?

JAC for Bukit Gasing.

savebukitgasing_5005

Photo of   Jalan 5/60 after the heavy rain on 25th.January 2013….

savebukitgasing_5018

At the foot of the landslide, looking up the slope towards the Sivan temple. 

savebukitgasing_5006

This is another section of the slope below Sivan temple which collapse onto Jalan 5/60….

Savebukitgasing_5191

The massive landslide from the top of the Sivan temple wall to the road below (Jalan 5/60)

Savebukitgasing_5145

Close up of the Sivan temple structure and the base  of  the telecom tower….

Savebukitgasing_5131

Bukit Gasing, 25  January 2013  – Another series of landslide hit Bukit Gasing along Jalan 5/60, Petaling Jaya after the heavy rain this afternoon. Jalan 5/60 was block by fallen trees.  Landslides on 2 sections below the Sivan temple.

More photos here…

Landslide in Bukit Gasing – The Malay Mail 

 

PLEA FOR HELP: Residents want authorities to regularly monitor landslide-prone areas

KUALA LUMPUR: THE Bukit Setiawangsa landslide has caused panic among residents staying at several landslide-prone areas in the Klang Valley.

Residents in Bukit Gasing in Petaling Jaya, Ukay Perdana and Bukit Antarabangsa are now demanding that the authorities, especially the local councils, monitor landslide-prone areas and hillslope development.

Some claimed they feel “helpless” against the wrath of Mother Nature.

The latest Setiawangsa episode has jogged the memory of 37-year-old Iskandar Syahril who had been conducting his business near the site of the 2011 landslide that occurred in Ukay Perdana 4.

“I realise how we are powerless against nature.”

Iskandar said there was a noticeable soil movement at the site when it rained after the incident.

“I’ve seen how fast can it move. We are lucky as the previous incident did not result in the loss of lives, but how long will our luck hold?”

Iskandar said there was no further monitoring by the authorities at the site despite calls by him and other business owners.

Checks by the New Straits Times revealed that the affected area was likely to face another landslide because erosion had taken place, leaving a gap and making the whole facade vulnerable.

Slope Watch programme director Emiko Motoyama, who heads the community slope watch within Bukit Antarabangsa, said the residents should pitch in to help monitor slopes in their neighbourhood.

“The authorities cannot be everywhere all the time. We (the residents) should be the eyes and ears for them, since the residents are the best observers of any changes in the slopes around their homes.”

New Straits Times found several areas in Jalan Wangsa 9, Bukit Antarabangsa, have been marked by authorities as danger zones as there were minor landslips.

Persistent slope failures at Bukit Gasing in Petaling Jaya were consistent with the observations and fears of the residents as it was near to their neighbourhood.

Landslides near the Fraser Tower at Jalan 5/60 here were spotted by residents three weeks ago.

A Bukit Gasing joint community council representative, who only wanted to be known as John, said the landslides occurred after the development of the double-storey temple on top of the hill.

“The temple was built at the edge of the hill, causing water disruption and erosion,” he said, adding that the municipal council should seek a long-term solution.

The expansion of the temple made headlines in 2007 after it caused a landslip, leading the council to issue a compound and a stop-work order to the temple management for violating the Street, Drainage and Building Act.

Fraser Towers resident Brian Tan wants Petaling Jaya City Council to inspect the safety of the hills on the Petaling Jaya side.

“We feel that there are parts of Bukit Gasing that are unstable. The authorities must make sure the maintenance of the hill slopes is done regularly.

New Straits Times found more than five landslides within Bukit Gasing that could lead to severe damage to properties and residents.

imageNST

A landslip in Jalan Ukay Perdana 4 in Ampang, Selangor. Pic by Surianie Mohd Hanif

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