Cyberjaya, a city without soul?

Sitting at the edge of circuits of endless highways, Cyberjaya ambulates between being an overpriced land parcel to being the nucleus for the explosion of modern enterprise in technology, business and education for Malaysia.

MDeC drives the zone — drawing more investors, managing their expectations, service supplier, image developer etc — and as it stands, the area needs much propping up still. 

Cyberjaya is an artificial construct built by the will of men. Part of Selangor still, thanks to it not being annexed as a federal territory as in the case of Putrajaya; it falls under the care of the Majlis Perbandaran Sepang (MPSepang).

Those are the basic bits about it. Its future, despite the admonishments and elitist fervour of those in power is not in the hands of technocrats, but in the hands of those who use it.

Land, is as it has all been in the history of man, only means or remains if its inhabitants care.

Without care, it is largely a soulless place. And whether people would like to bitterly admit or not, Cyberjaya presently lacks soul.

People living or working in Cyberjaya may be happy personally or share group happiness, but it is unlikely that it emanates from the personality of the area.

In my MMU days, every weekend is an exodus. The university never had enough housing, students stayed off-campus in non-uni accommodations. In Cyberjaya, apartments were scarce and students paid a premium for their living space.

Yet they’ll leave the hi-tech city come weekend, and head home.

They are not the only one. The big three, HSBC, Shell and EDS don’t have many living there.

Questions

It is not any local councillor’s place to decide if people need to have more soul in their zone. It is however an obligation to ask the people working and living there, how to improve their work and stay.

One ongoing concern is the towing of illegally parked cars. MPSepang has hired trucks to do the job, and it is an ugly sight, seeing people having their cars removed forcibly, and without their knowledge.

There are some streets clogged unnecessarily, due to indiscriminate parking, and I applaud any effort to alleviate the situation. However the rest of Cyberjaya is not struggling for road space, reduced by careless parking.

So punishing people in those stretches seems a little rough. It becomes unfair, when you look at the Cyberia apartments, which houses many MMU students. It is impossible to move about Cyberjaya without a vehicle, so every other person has one.

With parking inside the apartment zone limited, they park outside.

The road is wide enough, and the traffic low enough, for side parks.

So why are the cars systemically summoned, and now having the added fear of having their cars towed.

The change

The parking situation is just part of the larger need for the Cyberjaya community, businesses and residents to voice out how they can make things better in Cyberjaya.

Tell MPSepang how you would like parking to be regulated. Tell them what works and what does not. Ask for a response. Write to your local councillor, and ask for those concerns to be addressed in the various meetings.

People in Cyberjaya do not have to just endure because they have to, they can react and they can demand.

Your councillors cannot move things if there is no groundswell for action. There has been a change of government, and things have become more people driven, but more can only happen if more are interested in speaking up.

I think that is how a soul can be found, for Cyberjaya

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