THE bustling industrial and logistics hub of Pasir Gudang has always been known as a major nerve centre for growth in Johor.
Home to the Johor Port, the town, which is located 33km east of Johor Baru, owes much of its success to the burgeoning heavy industries, petrochemicals and manufacturing sectors.
Since the Johor Port was opened in the mid-1970s, newer townships and more road networks to Pasir Gudang have turned the once far-off suburb into a highly sought-after address.
Pasir Gudang had not been in the radar of many property buyers in the southern region of Johor but that changed after the launch of Iskandar Malaysia in 2006.
The development corridor has five flagship areas, one of which is the Eastern Gate Development Zone that covers Pasir Gudang, Plentong, Masai, Seri Alam and Tanjung Langsat.
The other four flagship zones within the 2,217-sq-km economic region are the Johor Baru city centre, Nusajaya, the Western Gate Development Zone and Senai-Kulai.
As one of Iskandar Malaysia flagship areas, the Eastern Gate Development has started to attract investors and house buyers as towns such as Pasir Gudang become the gateway to the oil and gas hub in Pengerang and Desaru Coast.
In Pasir Gudang, most buyers are attracted to new developments such as Eco World Development Group Bhd’s Eco Tropics and Mah Sing Group Bhd’s Meridian East.
The two projects will complement the existing townships around Pasir Gudang such as Kota Masai and Bandar Seri Alam, which is being re-branded as a city of knowledge due to the many learning institutes in the area.
Meridin East is a lake garden community which includes the 3.64ha Mulberry Lake, a 2.5km jogging and cycling path as well as a 16,000-sq-ft clubhouse filled with facilities like swimming pool, gym, yoga room, mini theater, convenient store, lounge, cafe and childcare room.
The 531.3ha integrated mixed development is being developed within the next 12 to 15 years. It is Mah Sing’s biggest project by acreage and commands an estimated gross development value of RM5 billion.
Mah Sing group managing director Tan Sri Leong Hoy Kum said as Meridin East was located within close proximity of the booming the Pasir Gudang Industrial Hub and Tanjung Langsat Industrial Park, it would play an important role to address the need for homes for workers and families in the respective areas.
Besides facilities and amenities for a complete and sustainable development, Meridin East will provide residents with a lush green environment and a wide selection of activities to encourage exercise and healthy living.
Mah Sing plans to plant several thousand native trees around the Mulberry Lake to preserve and enhance the natural flora and fauna.
The township also has 44.5ha allocated to develop various activities for its residents to exercise.
ECO TROPICS ADDS TO PASIR GUDANG’S APPEAL
Eco Tropics is a 404.5ha mixed township with a gross development value of RM5.4 billion.
The developer has earmarked 311.60ha for 7,000 units of residential properties and 80.93ha for commercial units and green industrial properties.
Eco Tropics is the first gated-and-guarded development in Kota Masai and comprises a series of houses that are inspired by the architecture of The Hamptons resort on Long Island, New York.
The project’s Living Gardens Series was launched in 2015 comprising five precincts with a total of 2,500 units.
The first phase of the series that was launched is Greensgate, followed by its second phase, Millsgate. The take-up for each is about 70 percent.
Just three months ago, Eco World officially opened EcoWorld Gallery @ Eco Tropics and a 13.4ha public park, the West Lake Gardens, at the township.
The town park, one of the largest in Johor, was officially opened by Johor Menteri Besar Datuk Mohamed Khaled Nordin. Also present at the event were Eco World chairman Tan Sri Liew Kee Sin and president and chief executive officer Datuk Chang Khim Wah.
According to Liew, Eco World had spent RM14.5 million on the park.
“We are starting 2017 on a high note with the opening of West Lake Gardens and we are proud and excited to offer a beautiful community space to be cherished by residents of Pasir Gudang.
“It has been our goal to turn this area into a much sought-after address in Johor Baru,” he said in his speech during the launch.
West Lake Gardens boasts a scenic lake, gazebos, gardens, outdoor gyms and playgrounds.
The park also features a smart design that makes it a reservoir for rainwater, which will be collected to water the landscaped areas in the township.
Eco World will bring in Tesco into the Eco Tropics commercial zone and a primary school by the end of this year.
Meanwhile, Chang said Eco World had been steadily working on elevating the image of the Kota Masai neighbourhood in Pasir Gudang by improving accessibility and introducing amenities and facilities.
In 2015, the company collaborated with the Publics Works Department to upgrade the main trunk road of Jalan Kong Kong.
The developer is also building the new Senai-Desaru link. The link via Jalan Kota Masai (also known as The Middle Ring Road) has an estimated construction cost of RM12 million and is scheduled for completion by the end of this year.
“Our efforts to improve the Kota Masai locale have had a positive impact on the neighbourhood’s image and property values, resulting in more and more people keen to call this area home,” said Chang.