New Straits Times, Photo Credit to Eat Drink KL
clock 17-08-2018
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Trees Increase Property Values

Bangsar in Kuala Lumpur is touted as one of the swankiest neighbourhoods to buy property.

Yes, it's a hot place, so near the city, and feeling the heat with its matured trees being cut down for more parking lots, and, well, generally, development.

Residents are upset that the trees - those leafy tall structures that monkeys used to climb and hang around - are being cut down.

Jalan Ara is a prime example. Last year, 16 trees next to a mosque had red marks on the tree barks.

Reports said that there were instructions from the Kuala Lumpur City Hall to widen the drain and road next to this row of trees. Residents complained and most of the trees were saved.

But, further up the road, near a famous mini market, the heat is being felt by residents.

Again, the City Hall is carrying out "beautification” projects like a walkway, cycling area and an overhead bridge that necessitates the trees being removed.

An overhead bridge from one side of Jalan Ara to the other, where some swanky bungalows have been turned into commercial outposts? Surely people can use the pedestrian crossing?

There is a pocket park being built at a corner of Jalan Ara, facing the Bangsar Village shopping mall.

The City Hall has put up a tall sign, with some maps on it, and three trees had to be cut down for it. And, guess what, some saplings are growing there now, and the pavement height is seriously high! Definitely not disabled or elderly friendly.

Why cut trees and grow palms? Just trim them. The City Hall arborists should know how.

To think that in the 1970s, Malaysia had a green programme, and in the 1990s, our current prime minister then launched a nationwide Tree-Planting Campaign to make Malaysia a Garden Nation.

Trees, in case we all need reminding, help fight climate change. They provide us oxygen, and cool the air.

Trees mop up carbon-dioxide and other greenhouse gases from the air, which cools the earth.

In fact, a mature canopy tree absorbs carbon and releases oxygen to sustain two human beings!

Finally, they help raise the prices of property by at least 10 per cent, according to valuers.

Isn't it only fair that the City Hall tells residents what is in the KL Draft Plan 2020, drawn up in 2008, before we wake up to see a highway being built in front of our houses?

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