Upgrade work begins on two-decade old Taman Selera Muhibbah

Ting (third from right) and others pose for a group photo in front of the project signboard.

SIBU, Nov 28: A 20-year-old food court, Taman Selera Muhibbah, is being upgraded to provide a better trading environment for hawkers.

During the groundbreaking ceremony for the project, Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) chairman Clarence Ting said the project is one of three which the council is undertaking to assist hawkers to improve their business.

“Our stance for the hawkers is that they make money. The council’s main worry is how to improve the environment so their business can get better. That is why we are also providing cheap rent,” he said.

Ting added the number of stalls at Taman Selera Muhibbah will be increased from 48 to 52 stalls.

“The upgrading project was mooted by the previous chairman. When I took over, funds for the project were already there and we were hoping to start work in November 2019. Our original plan was to have it completed in November this year. However due to the pandemic, we could not do it,” he said.

The project is expected to be completed in September 2022.

“It is going to be a new Muhibbah and we hope the public will enjoy the place,” Ting added.

Taman Muhibbah was built in 1999 as a temporary site for hawkers when the late Datuk Robert Lau Hui Chiew was the council chairman.

Besides that, a temporary trading site costing RM400,000 for Tiong Hua Market hawkers is also nearing completion.

The Tiong Hua Market building has been rendered unfit for use due to cracks on walls.

“We don’t have plans yet for a new hawker centre but we are building a temporary one first. It should be ready by Chinese New Year 2022,” Ting said.

This will also see the construction of a new RM8 million-Sungai Merah Market to replace the old one.

“We are also going to improve the Jaya Li Hua Market which will cost us RM700,000,” he added.

On the Muslim food court which is Taman Harmoni, Ting said the council wants it to be a halal certified centre so as to attract larger crowds comprising not only local visitors but those from outstation. — DayakDaily