By Peter Sibon
KUCHING, January 15: Serian will have a modern look befitting a division when the proposed 5-year master plan to create a new township is realised by 2024.
Borneo Development Corporation (BDC) chairman Datuk Peter Nansian Ngusie said, BDC, as the implementing agency, would build 250 units of commercial shop lots, a new wet market, an integrated transport hub and ample parking lots.
“BDC is developing the new Serian township, which is to be integrated with the existing town. It will be befitting with its elevation as a division,” Nansian told DayakDaily in his office here today.
He opined that the initiative would boost the overall development of the town and its surrounding areas.
“Serian will become a modern town as there will also be a government office complex and a convention centre with Bidayuh architecture,” he said, adding that an Industrial Training Centre (ILP) would also be built nearby.
To encourage more Bumiputera to set up businesses in the new township, BDC would build a number of affordable double-storey commercial lots that would cost around RM700,000 per unit only.
Nansian revealed that the new township would have a piece of land alienated to Dayak Bidayuh National Association (DBNA) for commercial purposes.
“This is to encourage more Bumiputera to get involved in business and own these lots,” he emphasised.
Nansian, who is formerly Tasik Biru assemblyman and Assistant Minister of Community Development, estimated the gross development value (GDA) of the new township to be about RM500 million.
“We will make the new township more vibrant so that it will attract people to come. Serian is very lucky as it has big catchment markets such as Kalimantan, Sri Aman and Kuching. So, with this new township, we hope to make Serian a self-contained town,” he said.
The new township would also enable the private sector to set up a medical centre. A piece of land has been alienated for this purpose.
He highlighted that since the project is a state government initiative, it showed that it was sincere in developing not only Serian but the whole of Sarawak.
“Like it or not, the project is under the state government and, of course, under Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS). And we know that its main agenda is not only to develop Serian but also the whole state,” he said.
Meanwhile, Nansian suggested that the state government establish a southern region corridor development agency similar to Ulu Rejang Development Agency (URDA), Highland Development Agency (HDA) and the Northern Region Development Agency (NRDA).
“I am not saying that without such an agency there will be no development. This is because what we are doing in Serian now is also development. But with the establishment of such a regional corridor, we will have a dedicated regional agency so that development could be intensified here in the southern region,” he opined. — DayakDaily