By Karen Bong
KUCHING, July 18: The ongoing riverbank upgrading project with waterfront along Kampung Sg Bedil-Kampung Lintang-Kampung Tanjung will be further extended until Kampung Tupong to beautify the riverscapes that will become part of tourist attractions for a breathtaking exploration of Kuching.
Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg pointed out that the project to enhance the riverscape on both sides was part of Sarawak’s tourism infrastructure development that will enable locals and tourists to enjoy the Sarawak River along with its surrounding beauty and take glimpses of the city’s diversity.
“Two major projects to upgrade the embankment to become waterfront are being implemented in Kampung Sungai Bedil, Kampung Lintang up until Kampung Tanjung to beautify the landscape in the area and so that the development is on par with that across the river.
“In fact Kampung Tanjung and Kampung Tupong is not far away, so today we have agreed to extend the waterfront project until Kampung Tupong including Kampung Sinjan located in between,” he told a press conference after a working visit to two sites today.
He added that the waterfront extension project from Kampung Tanjung to Kampung Tupong will be implemented under the 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP).
Abang Johari together with Works Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof and Assistant Minister of Law, State-Federal Relations and Project Monitoring Sharifah Hasidah Sayeed Aman Ghazali took a boat cruise along the Sarawak River and inspected the progress of the under-construction Kampung Lintang Darul Naim Mosque today.
Funded by the state government, he said that the RM30 million waterfront project along Kampung Sg Bedil-Kampung Lintang-Kampung Tanjung was estimated to span about one kilometre.
“The current progress is about 30 per cent and hopefully it can be completed by the end of the year.
“The further extension of the waterfront to Kampung Tupong will roughly cover a distance of 500 metres so in total, the project will involve 1.5 kilometre from Kampung Sungai Bedil to Kampung Tupong,” he explained.
Across the river, Abang Johari disclosed that plans were in the pipeline to connect Kampung Nombor 3 (located across Kampung Sinjan) until Kampung Patinggan.
“This means our river from Kuching to Kampung Patinggan, both sides will be upgraded. If we observe closely, not all our waterfronts are of concrete as there are also soft landscapes.
“We will definitely beautify the landscape on both sides of the river with plants and local flora,” he said.
The waterfront project, he added, will also complement the ongoing Darul Hana development as well as the ongoing construction of the cascading waterfall near Fort Margherita, which is expected to be completed soon.
“The road from the Fort to the State Legislative Assembly Complex and connected with Darul Hana Bridge. This will definitely attract people to take a stroll and visit,” he further said.
Abang Johari emphasised that this was one of the state government’s initiatives to boost infrastructure development in Kuching City from the perspective of tourism which was aimed at not only enhance the riverscape but will also open up more economic opportunities for local communities.
On the RM8 million Kampung Lintang Darul Naim Mosque under construction, he said it would be fully equipped with facilities including a lab for IT training to benefit the local community.
“They (mosque committee) are working with SMA (Sarawak Multimedia Authority) to set up the lab to enable the local community to learn IT skills because the people here are in fact tech-savvy already,” he added.
He informed that the mosque which will have 1,500 people capacity with a leisure area on the top level is now 80 per cent completed.—DayakDaily