The Federal Territories Ministry has gazetted part of the Bukit Kiara green lung as a federal park. NSTP/ASYRAF HAMZAH

KUALA LUMPUR: The Federal Territories Ministry has gazetted part of the Bukit Kiara green lung as a federal park.

The move was taken to prevent the fate which befell Taman Rimba from repeating itself.

The Tanah Rimba case, now in its fifth year, saw residents opposed to a development project consisting of nine apartment blocks, part of a joint venture between Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan (YWP) and Memang Perkasa Sdn Bhd. They had feared that the project would destroy up to 10ha of green space, said to be one of Kuala Lumpur’s last green lungs.

Federal Territories Minister Khalid Samad said the government decided to gazette part of the Bukit Kiara green lung as the Bukit Kiara Federal Park, which would make its the biggest in the city.

He said the ministry would put in place the necessary public amenities and recreational facilities, before opening the park to visitors.

“This is one of biggest that we set out to develop as a recreational park in the city.

“We expect the development and upgrading works to be completed by next November,” Khalid told a press conference here, today.

Khalid said the move to gazette part of Bukit Kiara as a natural green habitat, was to protect its flora and fauna from being destroyed.

“Just because you see some development taking place there, don’t assume that some highrise building is about to be built there. No, that’s not true,“ he added.

Khalid said the park’s development once completed, would be maintained by the recently established National Landscape Department and National Council of Parks.

“We are determined to promote and provide a healthy living environment for everyone and green lung conservation is a major element.”

He said on June 27, 2007, the government had agreed to build a large-scale public park in Bukit Kiara, Kuala Lumpur. The land is located between Taman Tun Dr Ismail and Bukit Kiara.

“However, after further checks we found that only 164ha could be developed for the construction of the federal park.

“A small portion in the middle of the green lung has been occupied and the lease only ends in 2026.

“So, we shall wait until the lease expires before deciding what to do with it,” he said.

Meanwhile, National Landscape Department director-general Rotina Mohd Daik said the facilities proposed for the federal park included parking facilities, sports and recreational equipments.

She said they would also undertake landscaping work to preserve the park’s natural atmosphere.

“We also hope to include more flora and fauna in the existing environment at the park for the visitors to experience and appreciate nature.”