02 February 2010


I read an article in The Star last Monday - residents and tenants were complaining of construction work going on at night and causing them to lose sleep and suffer from apparent stress due to constant noise.

Here's the article as extracted directly from the site.

Construction work going on at night in Kuala Lumpur and Petaling Jaya is causing many residents to lose sleep and suffer from stress due to the constant noise from the project sites.

THE excessive noise from the construction site going on next to a condominium along Persiaran Raja Chulan, Kuala Lumpur, has become bad enough to drive residents out of their homes. “I know at least four households who have moved out because they could no longer stand the construction noise next door,” resident Neil Bruce, 49, a freelance human resource consultant said. He said both he and his wife, who work from home, were losing sleep and suffering increased stress due to the constant noise from constuction work on another residential high-rise property next door.

Similar complaints have been made in many other locations and it seems to be part of the price the people have to pay for development.

Another incident reported was that of Lee Choo Seng, 87, who instead of being able to relax and spend his free time pursuing his hobbies, was driven out of his home due to the noise from massive construction and renovation work carried out in his area in Taman Seputeh, Cheras.

A neighbour, who only wished to be known as Ng, said Lee would often go to a nearby mall and return much later when things quietened down. He said they were not against development but were against the blatant disregard for rules and construction guidelines. According to the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) construction guidelines, work can only be carried out from 8am to 6pm, Monday to Saturday, except on public holidays.

To me, I've been in the industry directly for 7 years now - and technically I was born and bred in the construction industry. Back in the days, I used to recall construction sites and projects were going on everywhere; and the residents would not make much complains or rejections. The following were their reasons:-

New developments are able to enhance property value.
Residents and owners back in the day always agree that a new development, or a new project would set a new benchmark for the property in the surrounding areas - hence, enabling their own property value to be enhanced and increased. I still believe that this is true - more and more newer and latest state-of-the-art projects are coming along - and all of them enhances the property values of its surrounding existing buildings.

New developments create more awareness of the existing area.
With every new development that come up, various marketing activities are carried out to create a new form of awareness in the area. Take Sentul for example. If it wasn't for YTL which promoted Sentul East and Sentul West so much, I believe Sentul would still have a stereotype reputation even up til now. YTL had re-branded Sentul as a new brandname and made it the place to live - a desirable place that is in demand. Who stood to benefit? At the end of the day - it is the residents who benefit the most.

I think the residents and owners who stay next to construction sites should also be more patient with its surroundings. This is somewhat a very difficult thing to do - but what the residents today dont realize is that the more hindrance and complains you give to the contractors/developers, the longer the project will take.

A high-rise project typically takes between 24-30 months to complete. If the DBKL were to impose the strict working hours of up to 6pm only due to residents dissatisfactions, I believe some of these projects would take much longer to complete - perhaps up to 6-10 months longer due to the shorter working hours. In this case, who suffers more? It is the residents as well.

I would like to appeal to the residents and owners all over the country to bear with the construction projects that are going on surrounding you. There are many of these projects that have been approved by the local authorities and have launched their products to the public - hence it is quite impossible to pull back these approvals. Adding onto that, a construction site that is moving and alive is less of an eye-sore than a project that is abandoned. Lesser complains and a good cooperation with the contractors and developers would allow the project to complete on time and hence - a shorter disturbance of time to them.

Think about it - you stand to benefit the most.


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