by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, in Penang on Friday, 25th February 1994:
MPPP President, Tan Gim Hwa should explain why he had disregarded the MPPP Structure Plan in de-stroying Gurney Drive as a recreation centre by approving an exclusive 36-storey condomonium in the centre of Gurney Drive known as SILVERTON
MPPP President, Datuk Tan Gim Hwa should explain why he had disregarded the MPPP Structure Plan in destroying Gurney Drive as a recreation centre by approving an exclusive 36-storey condominium in the centre of Gurney Drive at the junction with Cantonment Road known as ‘SILVERTON’.
The MPPP approval of the 66-unit SILVERTON project to a RM2 company, Titian Idaman Sdn. BHD. at its MPPP full council meeting on 9th December 1993 again raises many public interest, questions.
The first question is how the MPPP could, give approval for a 66-unit exclusive condominium project in the centre of Gurney Drive – which would be sold at RM1 to EM2 million per unit to a RM2 company. In fact, I understand that in the last two months, sale of these exclusive condominium units have already started.
Tan Gim Hwa should explain whether it is not true that the real owners of the SILVERTON project are the same as the owners of the RM200 million Taman Midlands ‘One-Stop Centre’ project.
Secondly, why did MPPP disregard the MPPP Structure Flan which identified Gurney Drive as one of the recreational sites which needs to be improved and expanded In approving the exclusive 35-storey condominium in the middle of Gurney Drive, the MPPP would, be destroying the recreation attractions of Gurney Drive, as it would lead to the construction of other high-rise buildings along the road turning Gurney Drive into a concrete jungle.
The beach front of Gurney Drive, which is its most unique and distinctive attraction, would be destroyed, and the residents at the back of Gurney Drive would be deprived of the ventilation, air, sea-breeze and scenery with the blocking up of the frontage.
If MPPP wants to improve and enhance Gurney Drive as a primary recreation site, not only for tourists but also for ordinary Penang people, the beach-front at Gurney Drive must be preserved.
MPPP, for instance, must learn from Hawaii which preserved its beachfront with the rule that buildings cannot be higher than the coconut palm.
What Tan Gin Kwa is trying to do is to destroy Penang’s unique characteristics which has been a main tourist attraction, by turning Penang into another concrete jungle like Hong Kong.
Penang Chief Minister, Dr. Koh Tsu Koon should summon Tan Gim Hwa to give a full report as to why the MPPP gave approv¬al for the 36-storey exclusive condominium at Gurney Drive with¬out public participation or consultation, order the MPPP to make public all details about, the MPPP approval for the SILVERTON project and direct a freeze on the SILVERTON project.
If not, the SILVERTON project will be the latest addition to the strings of MPPP scandals under the administration of Tan Gim Hwa.