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Kuala Lumpur Structure Plan 2020



1 Introduction

2 International and National Context of Growth

3 Vision and Goals of Kuala Lumpur

4 Economic Base and Population

5 Income and Quality of Life

6 Land Use and Development Strategy

7 Commerce

8 Tourism

9 Industry

10 Transportation

11 Infrastructure and Utilities

12 Housing
  12.1 Introduction
  12.2 Existing situation and issue
    12.2.1 Housing quality
    12.2.2 Housing provision by type
    12.2.3 Distribution of housing
  12.3 Objective
  12.4 Policy and proposal
    12.4.1 Housing quality
    12.4.2 Housing provision
    12.4.3 Distribution of housing
  12.5 Future requirement

13 Community Facilities

14 Urban Design and Landscape

15 Environment

16 Special Areas

17 Strategic Zone

18 Implementation



12.1 Introduction

516. The residential population of a city is its most important resource and its greatest responsibility. The well being of Kuala Lumpur’s inhabitants is the overriding concern of the City authorities and for that reason; housing has always
been an item high on its agenda.
517. The KLSP 1984 was aimed at ensuring that sufficient housing would be provided for all income groups in the City and that housing was properly distributed so that its residents could be properly served in terms of infrastructure, utilities and community facilities. The strategy has, for the most part, been successfully implemented. In line with the vision of A World-Class City, the emphasis will now focus on improving the quality of housing and the housing environment.
518. Improvements in the housing environment shall include enhancing comfort levels both within and outside housing development, upgrading the provision of infrastructure, utilities and community facilities to the level of those enjoyed in other world-class cities, and improving the visual appearance of housing development. Innovative designs, provision of the latest conveniences and facilities, variety of choice, quality of finish and attractiveness of layout, shall become priority concerns.
519. Much of the City’s older housing stock is in varying states of disrepair. Neglect, poor maintenance and poor construction have all contributed to declining visual amenity in various parts of the City. Upgrading and redevelopment programmes shall be initiated to improve the standards and environmental quality of existing housing stock, whether private or public.

12.2 Existing situation and issue
 12.2.1  Housing quality
 a)  Quality of the housing environment
 i.  Existing situation

520. The quality of the housing environment has improved greatly in recent years in the newly developed housing areas such as Damansara, Bangsar, Wangsa Maju, Ampang and Taman Tun Dr. Ismail. However, many of the older private housing estates, for example Taman Setapak Jaya, Taman Kok Doh, Taman Bullion, Batu Housing Estate and Taman Sri Rampai, are still lacking in the provision of community facilities and landscaped areas.
521. Social problems associated with high-density living have led to vandalism and a lack of community concern over the upkeep of these areas which has in turn exacerbated environmental problems.

 ii.  Issue

  • Poor quality of external environment in older housing estates; and

• Social and environmental problems related to high-density living.
522. The level of maintenance in some private development, especially in private flatted housing, leaves much to be desired. Insufficient funds are directed towards essential maintenance and replacement leading to a loss of visual and environmental amenity.

• Poor maintenance of private flatted housing.

 b)  Low cost and public housing standards
 i.  Existing situation

523. Basic standards in low cost housing are determined on a nation wide basis and are applied by CHKL, as elsewhere, with little deviation. Space standards for low cost housing have been recently revised from a minimum of 60 square metres to 65 square metres per unit. The maximum builtup area for low cost housing development is set at 70 percent leaving the remaining 30 percent for utilities and community facilities, while maximum densities have been set at 150 people per hectare.

 ii.  Issue

524. Space standards are still low when compared to other developed or developing countries and will certainly continue to be revised upwards as income levels increase.

• Space standards for low cost housing are low.
525. The standards of provision of facilities and utilities in low cost housing such as children’s playgrounds, reading rooms, community facilities and open space are inadequate to meet the needs of the residents.

• Under provision of community facilities within low cost housing areas.
526. Car parking provision for low cost housing is apparently inadequate, which has led to related problems such as illegal roadside parking, traffic obstruction and the like.

• Shortage of car parking spaces in low cost housing areas.
527. Maintenance procedures for public housing are reactive rather than preventive leading to wastage of resources and consequently higher maintenance costs. This problem is exacerbated as costs escalate when the buildings get older.

• High maintenance costs for public housing.
528. A major contributor to high maintenance costs in public housing is the use of cheap low quality materials and poor construction.

• Poor quality of construction and materials in low cost housing development.

 c)  Temporary housing : squatters and long houses
 i.  Existing situation

529. The squatter survey carried out in 1998 indicated that there were 197 squatter settlements in Kuala Lumpur occupying about 645 hectares.
530. From 1992 to 1998 there was a reduction of about 32.4 percent in the squatter population (refer Figure 12.1). The reduction was largely due to intensive action taken by government agencies to build more low cost housing through privatization and redevelopment programmes.
531. However, there are still some residual squatter settlements whose presence in the City is unacceptable for many reasons. They are characterised by unacceptable environmental conditions, high fire risks and a general lack of hygiene. In addition, many are located close to or along strategic routes or beside rivers thus marring the image of the City and causing river pollution.

Figure 12.1: Squatter Population, 1992 - 1998

 ii.  Issue

  • The presence of squatter settlements in the City is unacceptable.
532. Long houses, such as those at Kerinchi, Cheras and Setapak, were originally provided in order to house people displaced by development projects until they could be rehoused in permanent accommodation. These temporary dwellings, some of which are now over 15 years old, lack community facilities and utilities and are still in use as transit accommodation.

• Temporary houses are poor in quality and lack basic facilities.

 d)  Dilapidated housing
 i.  Existing situation

533. About 5.5 percent of the existing housing stock was built in the sixties or seventies and much of it is dilapidated and in need of replacement. Apart from being in a very poor state of repair, these dilapidated housing areas lack basic facilities.

 ii.  Issue

  • Poor environmental condition of dilapidated housing.
534. The majority of dilapidated housing is located in the City Centre, for example Selangor Mansion and Malayan Mansion in Jalan Masjid India, Tuanku Abdul Rahman Flats in Jalan Tun Razak and Tan Cheng Lock Mansion and Selayang Flats in Chow Kit. Their continued existence in the City Centre is an uneconomical use of prime land and severely detracts from the image of the City.

• Many of the dilapidated housing areas especially low cost housing are located in strategic areas in the City Centre.
535. A number of houses in the Malay Reservation Areas, traditional kampungs and new villages are built on lands with multiple-ownership. These houses are often built without obtaining appropriate approvals and do not comply with planning and building standards.

• Houses built in Malay Reservation Areas, traditional kampungs and new villages frequently do not comply with planning and building standards.
536. Much of the old government and institutional housing for public sector employees are dilapidated or located in flood prone areas and require replacement.

• Dilapidated state of older institutional housing.

 12.2.2  Housing provision by type
 a)  Housing stock
 i.  Existing situation

537. Between 1980 and 2000, the housing stock grew by an average of about 10,000 additional units per annum (refer Figure 12.2). There is a slight overall shortfall in housing provision of 20,600 units if temporary housing is not taken into consideration.

 ii.  Issue

  • Deficit in housing provision.

 b)  Housing supply and demand
 i.  Existing situation

538. Types of housing are divided into three broad categories, namely low cost, medium cost and high cost. Medium and high cost housing is entirely produced by the private sector, while low cost housing is mainly provided from government housing programmes and from the 30 percent low cost housing quota imposed on private developers constructing new housing development.
539. Table 12.1 shows a comparison between the existing housing supply by types and a projection of the effective housing requirements based on the relative household income levels of the City’s residential population.

Figure 12.2: Housing Growth, 1980 - 2000

Table 12.1: Existing and Required Housing, 2000
540. Table 12.2 indicates the distribution of existing and committed housing supply in the six strategic zones. Majority of the existing housing and those under construction are located in Bukit Jalil - Seputeh, Wangsa Maju - Maluri, Sentul - Menjalara and Bandar Tun Razak - Sg. Besi. The future housing supply as indicated in the planning approval is expected to concentrate in Sentul - Menjalara, Bukit Jalil - Seputeh and Bandar Tun Razak - Sg. Besi.
541. In the year 2000 there was a significant shortage of low and medium cost units and a corresponding oversupply of high cost units. The deficit in low cost housing will be offset by ongoing low cost housing programmes which will be made available a total of 56,953 units by the year 2005 (refer Table 12.3).

Table 12.2: Housing Supply by Status, 2000
542. The shortfall in housing for the middleincome groups is especially of concern. Many of the people who fall into this category form a large part of the City’s workforce and are essential for the functioning of its businesses and commerce.

Table 12.3: Low Cost Housing Projects, 2000
543. There has already been significant outmigration of the middle-income population to more affordable housing outside the City boundary, which has contributed to increased traffic demand to and from the City Centre.

 ii.  Issue

  • Shortfall in the supply of medium cost housing.

 c)  Public Housing
 i.  Existing situation

544. Since about 8.1 percent of households are unable even to purchase low cost housing, CHKL supplies public housing for rental at subsidised rates. Currently there are 32,000 units of public housing in Kuala Lumpur.

 ii.  Issue

  • A significant percentage of the City’s population is unable to afford low cost housing.

Photo 12.1: The deficit in low cost housing will be offset by on-going low cost housing programmes…

 d)  Housing for special needs groups
 i.  Existing situation

545. At present two homes for the aged have been built through private agencies and CHKL are planning to construct one more as well as two youth hostels, one in Gombak and the other in Chan Sow Lin. There is, however, a pressing need to provide more housing accommodation for special needs groups such as the physically disabled, the aged, single mothers and single men and women.

 ii.  Issue

  • Inadequate provision of housing for special needs groups.

 e)  Housing for public sector employee
 i.  Existing situation

546. The cost of private rental housing in Kuala Lumpur is very high in comparison with the rest of the country, and far exceeds housing allowances made available to public sector employees. Consequently many are obliged to rent substandard accommodation or to find alternative accommodation outside the City.
547. To date, about 11,000 housing units has been provided by respective government agencies for their employees who pay subsidised rental. However, there is an insufficient amount of such housing to meet current needs.

 ii.  Issue

  • Lack of affordable accommodation for public sector employees.
548. Much of the housing for public sector employees is low density and the government land on which it is built is under-utilised.

• Under-utilisation of government land used for housing public sector employees.

 12.2.3  Distribution of Housing
 a)  Housing by type
 i.  Existing situation

549. Table 12.4 and Figure 12.3 indicate the distribution of housing types in the City. Housing is generally evenly distributed throughout the City with the notable exception of Damansara where there is no low cost housing and Bandar Tun Razak which contains a disproportionately high number of low cost housing units.
550. There are also 7,447 low cost housing units in the City Centre most of which are in a dilapidated state and which occupy land in prime areas. This issue is highlighted in paragraph 12.2.1d) above.

 ii.  Issue

  • Uneven distribution of housing by type.

 b)  Housing in the City Centre
 i.  Existing situation

551. In parallel with the decline of the City Centre residential population, there has been a commensurate drop in residential land area from 523 hectares in 1980 to 288 hectares in 2000.
552. The decline in residential land use in the City Centre is due to the redevelopment of some of the older housing areas into offices and other commercial uses. In addition to the areas of dilapidated housing in the City Centre, there are many older, low density housing areas occupying land which has high potential commercial value. Pressures will remain on these remaining pockets of residential land to convert to more profitable land use, which, in turn, could lead to a further reduction in the inner city residential population.

 ii.  Issue

  • Decreasing residential land use in the City Centre; and

• Pressure on remaining residential land in the City Centre to convert to commercial usage.

Table 12.4: Distribution of Housing by Types, 2000

 c)  Housing along major roads
 i.  Existing situation

553. In certain areas of the City where housing has been built facing major roads, there is pressure to change the usage from residential to commercial. This kind of ribbon development is undesirable as it leads to uncontrolled commercial development that can adversely affect the City’s planned intentions.

 ii.  Issue

  • Pressures for commercial development on housing areas facing major roads.

 d)  Housing density
 i.  Existing situation

554. Comprehensive Development Plan 1040 and the Density Rules of 1985 determine housing densities. The density range used by the plan is between 4 persons per hectare (pph) to 162 pph and an average density of 24 pph is applied to all areas outside the original 93 square kilometre area of Kuala Lumpur.
555. Although they are now as ubiquitous as conventional housing, condominiums were a relatively new concept at the time that the original housing densities were determined. As a consequence of the growth in the number of condominium development, densities in housing areas have increased and are no longer consistent.

Figure 12.3 : Distribution of housing by type, 2000

 ii.  Issue

  • Current housing density guidelines are outdated.

12.3 Objective

556. To enhance the City’s living environment, CHKL aims to:

• improve the quality of housing and housing environment;

• revitalise the City Centre by increasing the residential population; and

• eradicate substandard housing.
557. For Kuala Lumpur to create an Efficient and Equitable City structure, CHKL aims to:

• ensure sufficient housing to meet the demands of all income groups.

12.4 Policy and proposal
 12.4.1  Housing quality
 a)  Quality of the housing environment

558. Good quality housing is a combination of many aspects of housing development. Design and layout, environmental responsiveness, the quality of workmanship and materials, the provision of utilities and facilities, landscaping, maintenance and upgrading, all play a part in the total housing environment. CHKL shall encourage and work with the private sector to raise overall standards of housing in all of these areas so as to produce housing of the highest quality.
559. The quality of the housing environment extends beyond the boundaries of individual residential development. Careful attention should be paid to the external environment within private development and also to the external appearance and environment immediately outside including the manner in which developments relate to their immediate surroundings. Housing development should seek to be compatible with their surroundings, maintain connections, enhance the public spaces which they adjoin and optimise the spaces between developments. CHKL shall play an active role in ensuring that developers observe their responsibilities to the total city environment when planning housing development.

HO 1: CHKL shall encourage responsible parties in the housing sector to develop good quality housing and living environments.

Photo 12.2: Design and layout,environmental responsiveness, the quality of workmanship and materials, the provision of utilities and facilities, landscaping, maintenance and upgrading, all play a part in the total housing environment.
560. The private sector shall be encouraged to investigate new forms of housing which can offer a wider choice of lifestyle. Entirely new concepts or hybrids could be developed that combine the attractions of different existing housing types.

HO 2: CHKL shall encourage the private sector to develop a wider choice of innovative housing.
561. Building owners and management corporations shall be educated in the benefits of regular maintenance and upgrading schedules. In the older housing areas which have fallen into disrepair, measures need to be initiated to upgrade them to acceptable standards.

HO 3: CHKL shall, together with responsible parties in the housing sector, develop and implement measures to upgrade the quality of existing old housing stock.
562. Where necessary, CHKL shall implement additional measures to improve the condition and external appearance of private flatted housing estates that do not meet minimum required standards.

HO 4: CHKL shall implement measures to ensure that all private flatted housing estates are properly maintained according to the minimum required standards.

 b)  Low cost and public housing

563. In view of the likelihood that space standards for low cost housing shall continue to be improved, provision shall be made in the design of such development to permit an increase in space standards without the need for costly redevelopment. Efforts shall be made to enhance the space standards where appropriate in renovation or redevelopment of existing low cost housing.
564. The standards of finishes and fittings in low cost housing development shall be improved, as will as the standards of provision of amenities and facilities such as play areas, car parking and public community facilities.

HO 5: CHKL shall upgrade the standards of low cost housing.

Photo 12.3: Efforts shall be made to enhance the space standards where appropriate in renovation or redevelopment of existing low cost housing.
565. The external environment of low cost housing shall be improved by means of additional landscaping areas, improved standards of external finishes, provision of covered walkways as well as the repainting or, where required, retrofitting of existing facades.

HO 6: CHKL shall implement measures to improve the environmental quality of low cost housing
566. On-going regular maintenance, including preventive maintenance and periodic replacement of building elements and components, shall be properly budgeted for and comprehensive maintenance schedules devised for all public housing. Periodic upgrading to improve the standard of facilities in public housing estates shall also be planned and budgeted for.

HO 7: CHKL shall develop and implement maintenance and upgrading schedules for public housing.
567. CHKL will undertake an in-depth and continuing review of materials, components and best practice standards used in the construction of public housing in order to reduce overall life cycle costs.

HO 8: CHKL shall review standards of construction, material and services for public housing.
HO 9: CHKL shall consolidate the management of low cost housing to ensure that only the low income groups are eligible to rent low cost houses.

 c)  Temporary housing

568. Various programmes have been planned and implemented which are, at least in part, directed towards the elimination of squatter settlements in the City. Sufficient housing for the re-housing of squatters shall be in place before 2005.

HO 10: CHKL shall eradicate all squatter settlements and long houses.

 d)  Dilapidated housing

569. Appropriate action to improve or redevelop dilapidated housing areas shall be determined depending on the condition and location of the areas in question. CHKL shall ensure that the owners of privately owned dilapidated housing areas take prompt and appropriate action to improve or redevelop their properties, and, where necessary, will become directly involved in the regeneration of such areas.

Photo 12.4: Appropriate action to improve or redevelop dilapidated housing areas...
570. CHKL shall ensure that redevelopment of dilapidated housing areas in the City Centre incorporates a significant residential component.

HO 11: CHKL shall encourage the improvement and redevelopment of dilapidated housing areas.

 12.4.2  Housing provision
 a)  General

571. The decision as to whether to live inside or outside the City boundary should be one of choice rather than necessity resulting from a shortage of appropriate housing. It remains, therefore, CHKL’s basic responsibility to ensure that there is an adequate mix of housing that meets the needs of its population and is commensurate with the City’s population income distribution.

HO 12: CHKL shall ensure that there is sufficient affordable housing available to meet the needs of the population.

 b)  Low-medium and medium cost housing

572. CHKL shall take appropriate measures so that more low-medium and medium cost housing units are provided. Based on the 2002 current housing cost, the low-medium cost housing is defined as houses costing not more than RM85,000 per unit while the medium cost houses is not more than RM150,000 per unit. Both categories of houses are expected to achieve 30 percent of the total future housing needs. The private sector is encouraged to build low-medium and medium cost houses by providing incentives such as allowing high-density development in areas close to transit terminals.

HO 13: CHKL shall encourage the building of low-medium and medium cost houses.
HO 14: CHKL shall give priority to the tenants of public housing to purchase lowmedium
cost houses.

 c)  Public housing

573. As land and housing costs continue to rise in Kuala Lumpur, there will continue to be a section of the population who are unable to afford low cost housing. At least in the foreseeable future, therefore, there shall be a need for CHKL to provide public housing for rental at subsidised rates.

HO 15: CHKL shall continue to provide housing for rental at subsidised rates.

 d)  Housing for special needs groups

574. CHKL shall liase with the relevant agencies and the private sector in order to assess the housing requirements of special needs groups such as the physically disabled, the aged, single mothers and single men and women.
575. Appropriate land or floor space shall be set aside for such housing and CHKL shall encourage the private sector to participate in their provision. Hostels to house unmarried youths shall also be provided as required.

HO 16: CHKL shall, together with the relevant agencies and the private sector, ensure the adequate provision of housing for special needs groups.

Photo 12.5: Hostels to house unmarried youths…

 e)  Housing for public sector employees

576. Sufficient land shall be allocated in convenient locations within the City to enable government agencies to provide affordable housing for their public sector employees. In addition, where appropriate, existing under-utilised government land used to house public sector employees shall be optimised to provide higher density housing.

HO 17: CHKL shall, together with the relevant agencies and the private sector, ensure the adequate provision of affordable housing for public sector employees.
HO 18: CHKL shall encourage the redevelopment of designated underutilised government land to provide high-density housing for public sector employees.

 12.4.3  Distribution of housing
 a)  Housing by type

577. Housing shall be distributed by type throughout the City as evenly as possible and in a manner that is consistent with the development strategies. The strategic zone of City Centre, Damansara - Penchala and Bukit Jalil - Seputeh, of which the major parts are designated as International Zones, will have a preponderance of medium and high cost housing, although there will be some intensification of low cost housing in locations that do not conflict with the strategy. In the remaining strategic zones housing shall be evenly distributed by type so as to reflect a proper population balance.

Photo 12.6: Housing shall be distributed by type throughout the City...
HO 19: CHKL shall ensure the proper distribution of housing units by type.

 b)  Housing in the city centre

578. In order to attract more people to live in the City Centre, housing should be developed that capitalises on the opportunities offered by its unique location such as the availability of convenient public transport and proximity to the main business districts and shopping and entertainment centres.
579. CHKL shall encourage the development of inner city housing by private developers. Mixed commercial and residential development that contain a large quantum of medium and high cost housing shall be promoted with special emphasis on those near to transit terminals.

Photo 12.7: ...to increase the number of medium and high cost residential units in the City Centre.
580. In line with the strategy to enhance the business, working and living environment of the City Centre, the quality of low cost houses and low cost housing environment in the City Centre shall be improved.

HO 20: CHKL shall implement measures to increase the number of medium and high cost residential units in the City Centre.
HO 21: CHKL shall improve the quality of low cost houses and low cost housing environment in the City Centre.

 c)  Housing density

581. Based on the planning provision, the gross population density means that the development with less than 100 persons per hectare is categorised as low density, between 101-300 persons per hectare as medium density and above 301 persons per hectare as high density.
582. Housing densities shall be reviewed to be consistent with the development strategies. Highdensity residential and mixed development (residential and commercial) shall be encouraged near to rail terminals. Low or medium density development will be designated for International Zones.
583. Low density in specified high quality residential areas shall be maintained especially where these areas contribute to the green network. In other stable housing areas, existing densities will largely be retained.

HO 22: CHKL shall review housing densities to be consistent with the development strategies.

 d)  Existing housing along major roads

584. In order to avoid the creation of uncontrolled ribbon development in a manner that conflicts with the development strategies, CHKL shall discourage the conversion of residential to commercial use along major roads except in certain designated areas where special circumstances warrant such a relaxation.


Photo 12.8: ...conversion of residential to commercial use along major roads...
HO 23: CHKL shall discourage existing residential usage along major roads from changing to commercial usage except in certain designated areas.

12.5 Future requirement

585. Housing projections are based on the 2020 target population of 2.2 million. The distribution of housing reflects the strategies to increase the population of the City Centre and the preservation of Damansara - Penchala as a predominantly low density, high-class residential area in keeping with its status as an International Zone. In line with the overall strategy, housing shall be distributed evenly throughout the remaining four strategic zones.

Table 12.5: Total Housing Needs, 2020