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Mixed-use, mixed income neighbourhoods | MXMI: developing a new locally appropriate typology in the urban heritage area of Kampung Baru, Kuala Lumpur
Kampong Bharu in Malaysia is an urban village, the only historically and culturally important Malay urban settlement that has been slow in modernising its area due to the lack of urban design strategies and implementation mechanism for upgrading the valuable and prime land in Kuala Lumpur. Currently, Kampong Bharu is facing high demand for its land as a result of new mixed use and housing development proposals. Clearly, other urban villages in Kuala Lumpur are being replaced by large mixed-use, island developments that are initiated by developers to gain maximum profit and this occurs through the vertical separations on a single land plot, creating discontinuities at the ground level that affect the pedestrian flow and are visually disruptive. For this reason, the imbalanced land use needs to be rectified by bringing back the rich mix of residential typology, based on low to medium income families, which are integrated with mixed use development in an urban village setting.
Specifically, in the Kuala Lumpur Development Control Plan 2008 (KLDCP 2008) several key planning principles are used to regulate and control physical form development through development control processes and procedures. The most recent Draft Development Plan for Kampung Baru (PITKB), if fully implemented, could lead to alterations of the urban village character of the area and will affect the occupied neighbourhood and its existing traditional urban typo-morphology. Therefore, it is important to develop an appropriate urban design approach of mixed use development in the city centre by identifying how traditional and new morphologies and typologies could be created to integrate mixed-use developments (low, medium and high-rise) in a mixed-income neighbourhood, within the context of a traditional settlement, specifically in the case study of Kampung Baru.
As this research will demonstrate, the challenge ahead for urban revitalisation in Malaysia is to promote development that could help different local neighbourhoods in the heritage urban village to continue living their lives in their traditional places, with new revitalised physical settings but without losing their sense of place. New innovative urban design solutions, could help in adding value to the urban setting and support the needs of modern lifestyles.
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Iskandar is experienced in data collection and analysis gained from his Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degrees in Architecture and Urban Design at Oxford Brookes University. He has also conducted numerous architecture projects and urban studies during his professional work experience that involved the collection and analysis of data and is experienced in conducting interviews, questionnaires, and focus group discussion. Iskandar, a Malaysian national, has worked in London and Malaysia for the last 7 years with a specific focus in the fields of Architecture, Urban design and Project Management.