5-year plan to turn Kuching into metropolis, smart city

Sarawak Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg (centre) launches the 32nd anniversary celebration of Kuching city today. (Bernama pic)

KUCHING: The Sarawak government has drawn up a five-year development master plan to transform Kuching into a metropolis and smart city, Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg said.

He said the plan will identify commercial areas to be redeveloped in places supervised by the Kuching South City Council (MBKS) and Kuching North City Hall (DBKU).

The redevelopment will be implemented by both local authorities and the private sector, he told reporters at the 32nd anniversary celebration of Kuching city and opening of the New Norms Park at the MBKS building here today.

Abang Johari said the areas earmarked for redevelopment include Padungan, part of Jalan Haji Taha and Jalan P Ramlee. Among the facilities planned are a commercial centre and public transport facilities such as an Autonomous Rail Transit (ART) network.

“This redevelopment will not affect the existing historic buildings. Instead, the historical significance and cultural elements of the multi-racial community in Kuching city and the state will continue to be preserved,” he said.

Earlier, in his speech, Abang Johari said many changes had taken place in Kuching in the last 32 years with rapid development in the housing, commercial and recreational areas and public transport facilities and other utilities.

He said all these facilities were important to enable the people to interact and enhance unity among the multi-racial community, a quality which had earned praise even from outside the country.

“The development of a city also cannot escape from digital transformation, especially as we strive towards building a smart city,” he said.