Sustainable urban district ‘Penang South Islands’ to be developed in Malaysia

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Ramboll, BIG and Hijjas are set to design a masterplan for a sustainable urban district in Malaysia. The new Penang South Islands (PSI) will be located at the south-end of Penang island. It consists of three islands, measuring a total of 4,500 acres in total land size with mixed-use districts for 15,000 to 18,000 residents. In addition, residents will be provided with approximately 4.6km of public beaches, 600 acres of parks and a 25km waterfront.

Penang State Government initiated an international design competition in January 2020 to transform Penang South Islands into a sustainable, global destination. Penang’s biodiversity spans various topographies and protected environments that have in recent years, encountered new developments that disrupt coastal zones and natural habitats.

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In contrast, BIG, local architect Hijjas and Ramboll’s masterplan proposal – BiodiverCity – supports the Penang 2030 vision with a clear focus on livability, to enhance the quality of life and boost the economy to raise household income and establish a framework for socially and economically inclusive development. But most importantly a development that is environmentally sustainable for the future generation.

The masterplan

The masterplan supports a water, air and land-based autonomous public transportation network aiming for a car free environment where streets serve as a safe and welcoming thoroughfare for bikers and pedestrian. The buildings in BiodiverCity, will be designed to perform resource efficiently and will to a large extent be constructed by low-carbon materials such as bamboo and Malaysian timber in combination with green concrete.

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