Impact of Menara Warisan Merdeka

October 29th, 2010 by poobalan | View blog reactions Leave a reply »
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I’m sure fellow Malaysians would have been bored to death hearing about the 100-storey tower proposal costing RM5 billion as unveiled by PM Najib in his Budget 2011 speech. The project is to be financed by Permodalan Nasional Malaysia (PNB) hence considered private funding.  Its not even investor’s money but PNB’s own money.  So, what can non-investors complaint about. Some details about the location:

PNB paid RM310mil or RM220 per sq ft to buy the 36-acre land from Pengurusan Danaharta Nasional Bhd in 2000. Hamad said the market value of the land was estimated at RM800 per sq ft today. Of the 36 acres, around 17 acres are occupied by Stadium Merdeka and Stadium Negara, which have been identified as a national heritage site. Conservation works have been undertaken to restore their heritage characteristics and the two stadiums are now being managed by the National Heritage Trust.

The project is supposed to have shopping complex and condominiums as well.

Some of the benefits/supporting statement for the project, as mentioned in many reports and speeches are:

– spillover effect to other industries [but for how long?]

– an icon for developing Malaysia [hmm…]

– attract foreign companies to set up office here. [possible of course]

– boost economy [ can other things boost better?”]

– provide 5000 jobs [make KL more crowded!]

– not involving government money [thank God!]

– KLIA, KLCC and Penang bridge was also protested, but now is being used by everyone or by the protestors and brings much benefit to people. [true, but two of them are public infrastructure. Not sure how KLCC is doing]

The reasons given by protestors:

– already have many unleased space in KL area. [but in this case, PNB is going to occupy some of tower]

– congestion [which part of KL got no congestion la?]

– can utilise money in other areas like transportation, poverty eradication etc. [PNB is not doing charity, OK!]

– can relocate to Kg Baru [Can be considered].

– if project fails, government may need to spend public fund to bail out PNB [now, this is worrying!]

– its just a personal icon for PM [well, don’t we all need to be remembered for something?]

– no guarantee that locals (read: bumiputras) will benefit [of course la. Its a global village. You want be jaguh kampung, sorry la].

For me, its PNB’s money and PNB’s land. As long as government can guarantee won’t bail out, should be OK. BUT, since its a development project, there should be proper study and impact assessment done. In this way, public can voice out how the project will cause positive/negative impact to the surrounding area. Can suggest to improve transportation in tandem with the building development, for example.

If given a choice, I would prefer if the project is carried out away from KL city centre area. Reason is that it can spur more development. For example, can set up the tower in Sepang, Hulu Selangor, Kuala Langat, (oops, all PR area! No Go area for the moment) or Negeri Sembilan. This will provide decongestion, spur secondary and tertiary industries, and more job opportunities. The areas mentioned are still relatively near to airport and city centre, so not a big problem to attract tenants.

What do you think?



  1. Anonymous says:

    Read this, sounds like a reasonable analysis, at least for the lay person,

    for PNB, is Warisan Merdeka the best business opportunity?