Cost to fix 5 ‘hot’ slopes at KL Forest Eco-Park this year estimated at RM8.5m

Rehabilitation works on five hotspots at the Kuala Lumpur Forest Eco-Park are expected to begin this year, once the allocation of some RM8.5 million is approved.

This includes the slope facing Jalan Ampang, just next to the Federal Territory Forestry Department office, where a landslide took place on Dec 19.

The other four hotspots prone to landslides in the 9.37ha forest reserve in the heart of the Golden Triangle are near the Galeri Produk Kayu Malaysia, SMK Convent Bukit Nanas, Bukit Nanas Water Treatment plant, and the slope facing Jalan Raja Chulan.

Federal Territory Forestry Department deputy director, Mohd Zaki Mat Noor, when met by Twentytwo13 at the site along Jalan Ampang this morning, said several mitigation works had already been done, including the placing of heavy-duty tarpaulins at three of the hotspots.

“The other two mitigation works are the construction of temporary drains and the installation of real-time slope monitoring sensors at three hotspots at the location,” said Zaki.

The heavy-duty tarpaulins that cover the exposed soil at the slope along Jalan Ampang were placed on Monday – just four days before Malaysia fully opens its borders and welcomes back tourists.

The earlier tarpaulin sheets, placed following the landslide in December, were torn, and no longer protected the exposed surface.

The poor condition of the tarpaulin sheets was highlighted by Twentytwo13‘s managing editor Pearl Lee, in her column published on March 19. She raised the possibility that remedial works on the site had yet to begin because the relevant agencies did not have enough funds.

The left image of the slope facing Jalan Ampang was taken on Jan 19 while the second image was taken on March 14. Images by Twentytwo13

The city had also been experiencing frequent thunderstorms in recent weeks, resulting in flash floods in some parts of Kuala Lumpur.

Zaki admitted that the department was awaiting for the allocation of some RM8.5 million from the Energy and Natural Resources Ministry to be approved, in order for work to begin.

Zaki says works on the slopes will start “sometime this year”. Image by Twentytwo13

Work to repair the slopes permanently will involve site investigation, the strengthening of the slopes, the construction of a drainage system (interceptor drains, berm drains, cascade drains, toe drains, sumps, culverts and horizontal drains), and the installation of an early warning system.

“We are waiting for the budget (to be approved). Hopefully, work will begin by next month,” he added.

Several government agencies, including Kuala Lumpur City Hall and the Irrigation and Drainage Department, are involved in strengthening the slope there. The work will be carried out by the Public Works Department.

The KL Forest Eco-Park falls under the purview of the Federal Territory Forestry Department, a department under the Energy and Natural Resources Ministry.

The park is part of the Bukit Nanas Forest Reserve. It was gazetted as a forest reserve in 1906, and is one of the oldest in Peninsula Malaysia.