KOTA KINABALU: The master plan for the Tanjung Aru Eco Development (TAED) has already been submitted to the Kota Kinabalu City Hall and the public consultation will probably take place in mid-November till mid-December this year.
Peter Adam, the project director told press members at the TAED office here yesterday that they hoped to receive constructive feedback from the public concerning the project.
At the same time, the Special Environment Impact Assessment (SEIA) had also been submitted to the Department of Environment for its approval, said Peter.
The SEIA was submitted to the department in September this year.
Similarly, members of the public could comment on the SEIA through the department, he said.
The TAED development, which consists of a public park, rainforest, mangrove forests, hotels and housing areas, retail lots as well as a marina and golf course, is expected to benefit the wider community which includes job opportunities, improved tourism facilities as well as better recreation facilities.
Peter said that they would also address the worries of the people of Sabah with regard to the indigenous trees that were now within the development areas.
“Some trees will remain while others will be transplanted. We will take six months to uproot and replant them,” he said.
He added that they were already in discussion with the Sabah Forestry Department and said that the department would help to transplant the trees.
He also said that only trees indigenous to Sabah would be used in the development and that 20,000 trees would be planted on the project site.
“Some parts of the project will look like resorts while others will look like the rainforests,” he said.
With regard to the public area/park, Peter stated that it would be twice the size of the present Prince Phillip Park and would be equipped with electric buses, a public performance area, canopy walkways, eco education centre and a wet playground, among others.
“It will be a world class city park,” he said.
On the rainforests area, Peter said that it would probably take a decade for the forest to mature and that it would be worth the wait.
Additionally, he said there would be ample parking lots for the public (1,800 parking lots in all).
Investors wanting to construct buildings on the development site will also have to abide by strict standards that comply with the Green Building Index (GBI) and others.
Among others, investors would be required to install solar panels and carry out waste and water recycling, he said.
Mangrove forests will also be planted to help improve the water quality in the area.
He added that they had conducted tests on the present water quality at the Tanjung Aru beach and the findings had found the area/water to be highly polluted.
“However, many people, including children, have continued to be in the sea,” he said.
Work on the park is expected to start during the second quarter of next year.
The first phase will consist of the Prince Phillip Park and is expected to be completed within 24 months.
The entire project is expected to be completed within six years after the start of the construction work.
He added that the people of Sabah could expect an entirely different landscape once the project was completed.