JOHOR BARU: Long-term planning is needed to ensure that urban areas are able to grow to their fullest potential and provide comfortable living conditions for its denizens.
Universiti Teknologi Malaysia vice-chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Wahid Omar said major cities in the region were faced with issues of congestion due to the increasing population.
“Major cities, currently only have short-term solutions without taking into account problems which might rise in the long run for city dwellers.
“According to a World Bank report, Kuala Lumpur lost about RM30bil in revenue as city dwellers were losing out on their productivity level being stuck in traffic congestion daily,” he said.
Dr Wahid said this after officiating the 13th International Congress of Asian Planning Schools Association at the university’s main Skudai campus.
He said the urban planners should come out with long-term solutions, in anticipation of the population booming, in cities following the migration of rural folk into urban areas.
“Improve on the public transportation system and services to make cities liveable for its inhabitants.
“Cities should not be urban concrete jungles with skyscrapers,” added Dr Wahid.
He said there should be ample open space and green lung for residents in the city and the town planners should look a creating a balance between nature and modernisation in the planning.
“We are not against development within the city areas but developers must follow the guidelines in the plans drawn up by local agencies,” said Dr Wahid.
Source: The Star Online