BUCC had in 1993 signed an agreement allowing Dijaya Corporation (Dijaya) to use the land temporarily to access areas for Tropicana development.
Today, Tropicana Residents Association vice-president Mohd Shukri Zain led a 19-man delegation to hand over the petition to the Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) represented by Deputy Mayor Puasa Md Taib.
The petition, carrying 11,000 signatures, including those of officials of 19 residents associations, a school and commercial managements in the affected areas -- Tropicana, Kota Damansara and Sunway Damansara covering some 20 housing estates.
Puasa said the council’s Infrastructure and Road Traffic Advisory Committee would meet today to decide whether to allow the road closure or not.
He said based on a traffic study conducted early this year, "it is better to let the road operate as usual".
“This is just an opinion and a decision will be made by the committee chaired by the mayor, after taking into consideration views from both parties, including BUCC.
"MBPJ will also ensure that till Nov 20, the road will not be closed to public because it will worsen matters," he added.
Shukri lamented MBPJ’s lack of response to the issue and urged it to push for a decision to acquire the land on which Jalan Tanjung sits.
“We cannot accept (Bukit Lanjan assemblyman and state executive councillor) YB Elizabeth Wong’s statement that it is not feasible for the Selangor government to acquire the land,” he said on behalf of an action committee formed by the 19 aggrieved groups.
The petition claimed if the road was closed, it would inconvenience some 20,000 daily users.
“The usual 15-minute journey would become an hour-long one due to the existing daily traffic congestion. It will affect thousands of pupils of SJK(C) Damansara located on Jalan Tropicana Selatan,” said Shukri.
He said Jalan Tanjung had been in use since 1996 by commuters from Kota Damansara, Tropicana and Bandar Utama.
BUCC only owns a small portion of the road, about 8,600 sq ft, representing about 4.75% of Jalan Tanjung to Lebuh Bandar Utama and NKVE.
The agreement between Dijaya and BUCC was to allow Dijaya temporary access into Tropicana Golf & Country Resort (TGCR) and the land be returned after a permanent road is constructed.
However, Jalan Tanjung evolved into a “public road” since then as several more development projects were approved in the area over the past 10 years.
“If Jalan Tanjung is closed, traffic volume will be diverted to Persiaran Damansara Indah, Persiaran Tropicana and Persiaran Surian which are already congested,” Shukri explained.
“At valuation, the part of the land which BUCC owns may not cost more than RM1.5 million. Why is BUCC adamant in closing this road and not yield in the interest of the public?” asked Shukri.
On Aug 28, last year BUCC issued a 14-day closure notice to TGCR after which two meetings were held among the aggrieved groups, the two developers, MBPJ officers and Wong to try and resolve the problem.
BUCC proposed to turn the road into a one-way street exit road temporarily, while the entry road should be through Persiaran Bukit Utama from Nov 20 and six months later the road will be closed for good.
Shukri said none of the groups present at the meetings agreed with the decision but it was put to them as a “no-choice-option”.
“All the 19 aggrieved parties want the status quo to remain, that is to allow the public to use the road freely,” he said.
Shukri said closing the road just because part of it was on private property “is unfair” and it deprives the rights of the public”.
“Furthermore, the owner does not have any plan to use the land for any development,” he said.
Meanwhile, Wong told theSun: “The state government has no intention to acquire the land as it has no clear objectives to do so. The land was not supposed to be a road in the first place.”
She said the land, however became a “road” when the public started using it to get across more conveniently.
However, the aggrieved parties said they could not confirm from the state government Wong’s statement on the acquisition.
Wong said Lembaga Lebuhraya Malaysia (LLM), which owns about three quarters of the land where Jalan Tanjung sits, has submitted a proposal to expand the toll plaza on the highway and thus there was no point to acquire the land.
On this, a resident commented that the extension of the toll plaza, if any, has no relevance to the road closure and would not become an alternative route. The resident stated that that he was surprised with Wong’s solution to the problem.
The residents want the state government to step in to address the problem and not let BUCC to close the road arbitrarily.
Since the land involved is small, which may cost some RM1.5 million based on current valuation, there is a suggestion that the few developers in the area should chip in if the state says there is no budget allocated for an acquistion.